The Governor’s Council on Disability announces its annual Youth Leadership Award. The award is to recognize an outstanding Missouri youth (age 16-26) with a disability that has demonstrated exemplary leadership by making a difference in their community.

A youth with disability shall meet one or more of these criteria for the award: be engaged in activities that improve the quality of life of people with disabilities in Missouri or demonstrate social activism that improves their community in Missouri.

The winning award and honorable mention are presented annually at the Power Up assistive technology conference.

The Governor's Council on Disability (GCD) has selected the winner and one honorable mention of the 7th Annual Youth Leadership Award.

2019 Winners

2019 Youth Leadership Award winner: Annie Donnell

A recent graduate of Belmont University in Nashville, Annie Donnell has worked with the Starkloff Disability Institute’s Dream Big program, and is currently a paid intern at Delta Gamma Center for Children with Visual Impairments. Annie serves as a junior board member and volunteer for the St. Louis Recreation Development Group, assisting with fundraising efforts for an inclusive, accessible amusement park. Annie completed the 2019 New York City Marathon as part of the Achilles International team. She established and serves as president of the St. Louis Chapter of Achilles International, an organization where runners with disabilities and volunteers come together to train in an environment of support and community.

Honorable Mention: Dylan Farmer

Dylan Farmer is a 2015 alum of the Missouri Youth Leadership Forum and earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Maryville University in 2019. During his time at Maryville University, he participated in the ABLE (Abolish Barriers to Leadership and Employment) advocacy group and served on the Accessibility Committee. He got involved with Starkloff Disability Institute’s (SDI) Dream Big youth employment initiative and served as a student intern at SDI. He volunteered for the Missouri History Museum in St. Louis and was a team leader for Maryville Reaches Out. Dylan was proud to announce that he is a full-time employee with the National Archives and Records Administration.

The nomination forms for the 2020 Youth Leadership Award will be available this fall.

For additional information, please contact the Council at 573-751-2600 or by email at gcd@oa.mo.gov.

2018 Winner

2017 Winner

2016 Winner

2015 Winner

2014 Winner

2013 Winner