Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties Announces Promotion

The Giving Coast

Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties has announced the promotion of Suriya Khong to Vice President of Teen Initiatives. As a leader in youth development, Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties is committed to empowering local teens to succeed academically, using their voice and talent to make a difference in our community. This executive position will play an instrumental role in developing the organization’s infrastructure to further elevate and expand the impact of the Teen Program.

Khong joined Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties on January 4, 2017, after Boys & Girls Club of America announced 2015 as “Year of the Teen.” This national initiative focused on increasing teen impact, support, and membership retention. Understanding that this youth population is often underserved, BGCSDC launched the Tom & Debbie Shapiro Career Resource Center, vocational programs, and scholarship opportunities to ensure teens have a plan of success for their future. When Khong was hired, only one full-time staff was dedicated to Teen Programming. Due to Khong’s strategy and vision, the Teen Program has expanded to include seven full-time staff dedicated to high-quality skill-based programming specializing in the following areas: College & Career Advising, Entrepreneurial Education, Health & Wellness, Advocacy & Action, Leadership Development, Volunteerism, and Vocational Training.

As Vice President of Teen Initiatives, Khong manages, supervises, and supports the professional development of Teen Program staff. Khong has expanded key partnerships, creating opportunities for active youth engagement not only in our local community but on the national level as well. Khong is proud to be a part of a culture that recognizes the leadership potential in teens. The Teen Program consistently sets high-performance standards; remains mission-driven; and employs a youth-adult model of partnership that encourages teens to be active citizens while allowing them the opportunity to discover their passions, the support to develop critical skills, and the space to explore career paths and create a plan for success after high school. 

Photo of Suriya Khong courtesy of BGCSDC

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