[CHARLOTTE, NC] (June 18, 2013) – Charlotte’s Michael DeVaul was one of 12 YMCA leaders and partners honored on June 7th at the White House as Champions of Change for their efforts in transforming communities and making them better places to live.
Created as part of President Barack Obama's Winning the Future initiative, the Champions of Change program features individuals, businesses and organizations that are doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities. From addressing child hunger and reducing obesity, to improving education for kids and caretakers, each of the honorees has played an instrumental role in strengthening community.
Through the Champions of Change program, the White House and the Y have selected individuals who share the Y’s commitment to strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.
A 28-year veteran of the YMCA, Mike DeVaul is recognized for his community building and diversity work as well as his leadership in supporting the Charlotte Y’s global partners in Senegal, Gambia and Jerusalem. DeVaul has also led his association’s Global Center of Excellence strategy to ensure that all community members in Charlotte feel welcome at the Y.
“The Y relies heavily on community champions like Michael DeVaul to help us address pressing social needs locally and nationally,” said Neil Nicoll, president and CEO, YMCA of the USA. “We honor Michael not just for his commitment to the Y’s cause, but also for his commitment to global service.”
Michael joined the YMCA of Greater Charlotte in 1999 and currently serves as Sr. Vice President of Organizational Advancement. He is responsible for strategic alliances and partnerships for the association. A champion of the catchphrase ‘Think globally, Act locally’, Michael reminds others “You don’t have to leave the country to have a global experience.” With business globalization, immigration, and refugee resettlement, Charlotte has experienced significant demographic changes over the past 15 years making diversity work a Y association priority.
Michael helped establish the YMCA of Greater Charlotte partnership with the Senegal Y in 2002 which continues today. With unwavering commitment to the growth of global initiatives Michael supported the launch of the 2012 YMCA Global Service-Learning project which allowed 4 high school students and 3 Y staff to volunteer in Charlotte schools and then travel to West Africa where they served at the Senegal YMCA primary school. In 2013 Michael is championing efforts to support 6 young adults participation at the Europe Festival in Prague as well as the 2013 Service-learning project to Senegal.
Congratulations to Michael for receiving this outstanding award!
About the YMCA of Greater Charlotte
The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. The YMCA of Greater Charlotte, comprised of 19 membership locations and two resident camps, engages approximately 292,000 men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Deeply rooted in the community for 138 years, the YMCA of Greater Charlotte has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. www.ymcacharlotte.org