DTOC President Cindy White announced today that former Meridian Parks & Recreation Director, Mark Naylor, was selected to receive the DTOC Friend Of Youth Award for 2013. The Friend Of Youth Award was created to highlight and promote the work of community members who have gone above and beyond to help and support the youth in Meridian and Lauderdale County. President White explained at today’s meeting of the Downtown Optimist Club that Mark had been chosen because in the course of his career he always put the children first and was often able to obtain amazing results with limited resources. Mark has always tried to keep the focus on the kids and has worked hard for many years to create programs and events to involve, energize and educate the youth of our community in ways they might not even realize.
Mark was instrumental during the years that the Downtown Optimist Club was involved in Little League Baseball at Crestwood and even brought our club the opportunity to get back involved with baseball when he encouraged us to start running the Crestwood T-Ball Program after the Sertoma Club closed.
After receiving the award, Mark told the DTOC membership that his involvement with the Optimist Club dated back to when he played Little League as a child. He said that the “Friend of Youth Award” was more important to him not only because “Friend Of Youth” is the DTOC motto, but also because of our relationship over the many years we all worked side by side to support the youth of our community.
The DTOC will be making a $250 donation to The Parent Circle Support Group Of Meridian in Mark Naylor’s name. You can learn more about the Parent Circle via their Facebook Page.
Past Winners Of The Friend Of Youth Award