A Lafayette High School junior was named Lexington’s 2012 Youth Leader of the Year during “Youth Salute” awards ceremonies May 6 at Georgetown College.

Virginia Newsome received a $500 scholarship and an all-expense-paid trip, sponsored by Holifield Photography, to attend the National Council on Youth Leadership Conference set for Oct. 20-23 in St. Louis. Virginia has served as Lafayette’s ambassador to the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Program, founded the nonprofit heARTS and is a member of the Beta Club, French Club, Lafayette Drama, Leadership Lexington Youth and the Starlight Singers. 

Youth Salute also recognized school winners from among nearly 750 outstanding high school juniors from 55 Central Kentucky high schools, including:
Shaleigha Richard of Bryan Station
Lenna Hamilton Wilson of Henry Clay
Virginia Newsome of Lafayette
Trina Thomas of Paul Laurence Dunbar
Nia Johnson of Tates Creek
Several FCPS students also received scholarships:
Nakia LaShae Ridgeway of Tates Creek, $4,000 from Asbury University
Lindsay Brock of Lafayette, $4,000 from Eastern Kentucky University
Rebecca Clay Edwins of Bryan Station, $4,000 from Georgetown College
Nia Johnson of Tates Creek, $4,000 from Georgetown College
Trina Thomas of Paul Laurence Dunbar, $500 from Class 101, College Finance & Planning
Nia Johnson of Tates Creek, a $500 ACT/SAT preparation course from Class 101, College Finance & Planning


Youth Salute is conducted annually through the National Council on Youth Leadership in cooperation with the Central Kentucky Council on Youth Leadership. Juniors are nominated by their school counselors, teachers, principals and other community leaders. They must have at least a 3.0 grade point average and have been chosen by their peers or an adult leader for at least two leadership roles in school, religious or community-sponsored organizations during the past two years.

For more information, call (859) 276-2040.

Youth Salute taps Lafayette junior as Lexington’s leader