Say It Proud

JUNE SAY It Proud Winners!

June 2016 Winners from the Gladys Allen Brigham Center!

Congratulations Olivia, Irving and Lannah for your outstanding achievements!!

S.A.Y. It Proud is a campaign to recognize individual youth who are involved in positive activities and making good choices. In the past two years, a survey of 8th, 10th and 12th graders in Berkshire County revealed that teens do not feel their neighbors recognize the good things they do nor do neighbors encourage teens to do their best. Studies show that rewarding young people for positive activities help them to feel bonded to their community, thus reinforcing their commitment to healthy behaviors and lowering their risk for engaging in unhealthy behaviors.

The Pittsfield Prevention Partnership believes that our community values the good choices our teens make and how hard teens work. We are seeking nominations of individual young people ages 11 to 19 that participate in positive activities, make healthy choices, and/or work hard. We are especially interested in hearing about those students who have overcome obstacles in their lives. Submissions may range from 50-500 words. Please include your contact information as well as the contact information of the youth and their guardian, as we will need to contact you if they are to be interviewed for the media. Send submissions to the Pittsfield Prevention Partnership / SAY It Proud via email to or mail to Pittsfield Prevention Partnership, Berkshire United Way, 200 South Street, Pittsfield, MA 01201. Download the submission application here.

The PPP works with agencies that work with youth throughout Pittsfield, asking a different agency to recognize a youth from within its program.

Partner agencies include:
Helen Berube Teen Parent Program
Gladys Allen Brigham Community Center
Boys and Girls Club
Reid/Herberg Middle Schools & Taconic/Pittsfield High Schools SADD groups
Pittsfield Area Council of Congregations
Berkshire 4H
Pittsfield Family YMCA
MultiCultural BRIDGE
Youth Alive

Recent Winners Include:

Destiny Reilly, Nick Miraglia, Erica Davis Reid October 2013
Charles Ramsey, II 9.27.13
Colln Goodrich for 4H  8.17.13
Sarah spring pitch
Gladys Allen Brigham Center winner Ahlee Langlois
Ashli Reese 5.18.13
Zion Church 4.22.13 3
PHS Billy Coles April 2013
Taconic Weimon Chi April 2013
SIP  Dec 2012 Jacob Colon
Cole Stevens
Helen Berube winner 11.26.13
December B&GC Winner 2013
Carissa Jan 2014
Multicultural BRIDGE SAY It Proud winners February 2014 4
SAY it proud Reid April 2014 003
April winners from Faith Groups 2014
Cheyenne VanBramer
Jetter White
Shakia Green
Liam Mooney July 2014
Nick Soldato August 2014
Taina Figueroa
Noel Hunter November 2014
SIP June
SIP July- Cassie Kelson
SIP Winner Marquise Hamilton

Reid Middle School’s 21st Century Summer Program October award winners, from left: Destiny Reilly, Nick Miraglia, and Erica Davis.

Erica Davis took part in the Reid Middle School 21st Century summer program. While at programing, she took on the role of a peer mentor to a student who did not know many other students. In this role, Erica assisted the students in activities ranging from science to lunch to outdoor play. It was amazing to see Erica quietly take on the mentor-ship role all on her own. Erica's ability to notice someone needed extra help impressed the entire summer staff. We were so pleased to have such a positive role in our summer program.

Destiny Reilly was in the Reid Middle School 21st Century summer program. Throughout the program Destiny demonstrated enthusiasm during the entire day and held true to the RMS 4P philosophy: prompt, prepared, polite, participate. Her joyful disposition, willingness to work with others and focus on science and math led her to great success. We were so lucky to have been able to work with her!

Nick Miraglia took part in his second Reid Middle School summer program this past summer. Nick is an enthusiastic math and science students. His aptitude for math and science was evedint as he excelled in the engineering pieces of the summer. Nick contributed, and took great pride in, building a Box City and designing transportation grids for the future. Nick's academic skills and positive attitude were an amazing addition to the RMS summer program!

Charles Ramsey, II, an eighth grader at Reid Middle School was selected by St. John’s Lodge #10 / Pittsfield Family YMCA summer program.

Collin Goodrich was honored as the award for the Berkshire County 4-H in August.

Sarah Spring was awarded the S.A.Y. It Proud Award for the month of July by the Pittsfield Family YMCA.

Ashlee Langlois, a fifth-grader at Conte Community School, was awarded the S.A.Y. It Proud award for June by the Gladys Allen Brigham Community Center for her strong leadership with their youth swimming program.

May’s winner was Ashli Reese, a junior at Taconic High School and a drummer for the Youth Alive step dance and drum team.

April’s faith community award recipients were the following: From left, Andrew Wood, Emma Borden, Michael Coelho, & Aaron Weeks.

From left, Roslyn Vega, Ashley Lantingua and Bryce Remillard of Reid Middle School were honored as March 2013 recipients of the Pittsfield Prevention Partnership’s S.A.Y. It Proud award.

Billy Coles is a junior at PittsfieldHigh School, and was nominated for the March upper-school S.A.Y. It Proud Award by his AP Psychology teacher Lori Murphy and other supportive PHS faculty members.

Weimon Chi is a junior at TaconicHigh School, and was nominated for the March upper-school award by Taconic SADD chapter coordinator April Nutting.

Pittsfield High School sophomore Xinhui Li is the Pittsfield Prevention Partnership’s February 2013 S.A.Y. It Proud Award winner.

Jacob Colon was nominated by the Boys and Girls Club in December.

Cole Stevens was nominated by the Key Program in January.

Shaylimar Olivaria is a participant of the Rites of Passage and Empowerment program. She has demonstrated an exemplary and inspiring process of personal growth. The healthy living sessions with the mentors were cathartic for Shaylimar along with the ENUF theatre project. Shaylimar delved deeply into the acting, voice and moement trainging in the development of the ENUF productions in the process she found her way through personal difficulties.

Amber Parody is the November S.A.Y. It Proud Award award winner for the Helen Berube Teen Parent Program. Amber is a senior originating from Pittsfield High School. Her daughter Cynthia is a happy and healthy 6 month old.

Boys and Girls Club December winner, Alyvia Asta, is an 8th grader at REID middle school. She has been a member of the Boys’ & Girls’ club since she was two years old—first attending the Pre-school programs. Alyvia also attends Camp Russell every summer! This year she helped kick-off the BFF-BEST FOOT FORWARD- program. She is quite an attribute to this program which is a walking program ( first step is for health benefits) then after walking the girls pay-it-forward and do something nice for others. The group meets three times a week and Alyvia has been a great leader. She is also a member of the Junior Leaders’ Volunteer Program. This is a middle school-age group. They meet once a week—they do community service projects and raise monies to help families in need. Alyvia has literally grown up at the Club and they are very proud of the caring young lady she has become. She is a joy to have here.

Carissa Vranas, a student at Taconic High School and 2014's first S.A.Y. It Proud Award recipient, has the ability to overcome obstacles in her life with a smile on her face. Carissa always tries to find the positives in a situation and in turn makes the people around her feel more positive. She has strived to be a role model for her brother and is always thinking about how her choices will affect him. Carissa is currently a member of the Taconic Basketball Team. She also has been a part of the Taconic soccer and lacrosse teams. Over the summer, Carissa worked full time at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts.

Multicultural BRIDGE’s winners of the March 2014 S.A.Y. It Proud Awards are Christine Ahoussi, Jennyfer Behanzin, and Gladys Garcia. All three of these Girls are active community members, and part of the BRIDGE youth Corps. All have done outstanding work in the past year, including helping BRIDGE deliver a summer program in Pittsfield, doing spoken word performances and speeches with us, and advocating for themselves, each other, and their peers in school. All are graduating at the end of this year from PHS.

April 2014 S.A.Y. It Proud winners from Reid Middle School include:
Nicole Bellina - Member of SADD, Nicole is a positive role model for her commitment to excellence both in the classroom and in the community.
Salvatore Nataro - Member of SADD, Salvy is supportive of his peers, a motivator and a problem-solver. He is not judgmental, and finds value in every peer.
Makailey Cookis - President of Student Council at Reid Middle School, Makailey has helped raise awareness at Reid about “Staying Above the Influence” and “Anti-Bullying Prevention”.
Michael Kays - Treasurer of Reid Middle School Student Council, he helped organize a coat derive for BCAC, resulting in the donation of more than 300 coats to families in the community. He is dedicated to promoting Reid’s Positive Behavior Program.
Jade Phair - Active member of Student Council and the Girls Rock and Run Program, she has promoted “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” for Breast Cancer Awareness, and Staying Above the Influence Skate Night.

The Faith-Based Community has elected two winners of the April 2014 S.A.Y. It Proud Award. Zion Lutheran Church in Pittsfield nominated Kevin Aldam while Bailey Prescott was nominated by the pastor of First Baptist Church in Pittsfield.

From the Berkshire Eagle ("The Forum: City students receive SAY It Proud awards," 5/20/14):

Cheyenne VanBramer, a junior at Pittsfield High School, was named the May winner of the S.A.Y. It Proud award. She was nominated by Shirley Edgerton, director of the Youth Alive Step Team and Drum Corps, who also presented VanBramer with a plaque for her nine years of membership with the troupe.

Edgerton said VanBramer, a white student, has demonstrated against the stereotype that step dancing is "only something black kids do.

"VanBramer not only picked up and excelled at the performing art, but now teaches step to younger students. "She's a senior of senior members who has done amazing things," Edgerton said.

In addition, VanBramer is also a high honors student at PHS.

From the Berkshire Eagle ("The Forum: City students receive SAY It Proud awards," 5/20/14):

Jetter White, a sophomore, was also honored as the March S.A.Y. It Proud award winner from Taconic High School.

"Jetter is a walking example of a youth living above the influence. He is vice president of SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) and is a conscientious and hard-working student," wrote nominator and SADD adviser April Nutting.

In addition to SADD, White is also active in the Taconic Theater Department and Berkshire Children's Theater productions, both on stage and behind-the-scenes; he's also performed with the Town Players of Pittsfield.

He has also made the school's honor roll.

The June SAY It Proud winner is Shakia Green who is 12 years old and is a 7th grader at Herberg. She is was nominated by the Brigham Center because she is the most helpful youth at the center. She is always looking for ways to help, is the first to sign up for a task, works with the little kids in the day care center, and continually asks if there is anything she can do. She is unfailingly cheerful and good-natured.

July 2014 award winner: Liam Mooney, nominated by the coaching staff of the Pittsfield Family YMCA's Polar Bears swim club

August 2014 award winner: Nicholas "Nick" Soldato, a 4-H member for four years with the Fluffy Bunnies 4-H Club in Pittsfield

Kayla September 2014 winner: worked at The Salvation Army/Bridging the Gap through the Berkshire Works summer youth program.

Taina Figueroa, top reader at Marilyn Hamilton Literacy Program, October S.A.Y. It Proud Winner

Noel Hunter: Student at Taconic High School, nominated by the program for being a great student and a dedicated, hard worker. November S.A.Y It Proud winner

May 2015 SAY It Proud winners from Reid Middle school.
From left to right:
Ashley Lantigua- Nominated by Linda Whitacre
Taylar Ostrander- Nominated by Linda Whitacre
Carolyn Guachione- Nominated by Mary Yarmosky
Shannon Dean- Nominated by Debra Guachione RMS
Lord Nyametease Arhinful- Nominated By Mary Yarmosky

And Chris Broast, the PPP's Say it Proud Coordinator

June 2015 SAY It Proud Winner is Amber Chadwell of Girls Inc.

In the Photo from left to right:
Darius Griffin- Girls Inc. staff who nominated Amber
Amber Chadwell- Exceptional Student and Counselor in Training
Chris Broast- Say It Proud Coordinator

Randy Kinnas-Pittsfield family YMCA CEO, Chris Broast-Berkshire United Way Say It Proud Coordinator, Jessie Rumlow-Pittsfield family YMCA Counselor/ Nominator and July SAY It Proud Winner Cassie Kelson- Senior at Waconah High School, YMCA Counselor, and a Successful Youth

Y July SAY It Proud Winner Marquise Hamilton with nominator Lisa DeVergilio and SAY It Proud Coordinator Chris Broast

Destiny Reilly, Nick Miraglia, Erica Davis Reid October 2013 thumbnail
Charles Ramsey, II 9.27.13 thumbnail
Colln Goodrich for 4H  8.17.13 thumbnail
Sarah spring pitch thumbnail
Gladys Allen Brigham Center winner Ahlee Langlois thumbnail
Ashli Reese 5.18.13 thumbnail
Zion Church 4.22.13 3 thumbnail
ReidProud thumbnail
PHS Billy Coles April 2013 thumbnail
Taconic Weimon Chi April 2013 thumbnail
XinhuiLi thumbnail
SIP  Dec 2012 Jacob Colon thumbnail
Cole Stevens thumbnail
-1 thumbnail
Helen Berube winner 11.26.13 thumbnail
December B&GC Winner 2013 thumbnail
Carissa Jan 2014 thumbnail
Multicultural BRIDGE SAY It Proud winners February 2014 4 thumbnail
SAY it proud Reid April 2014 003 thumbnail
April winners from Faith Groups 2014 thumbnail
Cheyenne VanBramer thumbnail
Jetter White thumbnail
Shakia Green thumbnail
Liam Mooney July 2014 thumbnail
Nick Soldato August 2014 thumbnail
Kayla  thumbnail
Taina Figueroa thumbnail
Noel Hunter November 2014 thumbnail
SIP MAY thumbnail
SIP June thumbnail
SIP July- Cassie Kelson thumbnail
SIP Winner Marquise Hamilton thumbnail

Other participating youth programs are: the Helen Berube Teen Parent Program, Multi-cultural BRIDGE, Pittsfield Public Schools Students Against Destructive Decisions, the Pittsfield Council of Congregations, the Gladys Allen Brigham Community Center, the 4-H club, the Christian Center, and the Pittsfield Family YMCA.

All our winners receive an annual teen membership courtesy of the Pittsfield Family YMCA.

Connect with us: