Above: Brentwood Academy faculty member Barbara Stewart, who sponsors the Youth in Government Programs at BA, is pictured with Brandon Oliver, Chairman of the Center for Civic Engagement Advisory Board. // SUBMITTED
Brentwood Academy faculty member Barbara Stewart was presented with the 2017 Buhl Award for Dedication to Civic Education at the recent Tennessee YMCA Center for Civic Engagement annual benefit dinner.
More than 200 people attended the dinner on Saturday, Sept. 30, at the Tennessee State Capitol.
The YMCA Center for Civic Engagement staff and advisory board selected Barbara Stewart as the 2017 recipient because her dedication to civics and education has inspired multiple generations to be engaged citizens. Since 1978 as the Brentwood Academy advisor for the YMCA Center for Civic Engagement programs, Stewart has impacted the lives of hundreds of young people.
She teaches honors and AP history in the upper school, along with sponsoring the Brentwood Academy chapter of the National Honor Society.
According to Center Director Susan Morarity, “Barbara is an inspiration, not only to the children whose lives she’s touched, but to all of us who are lucky enough to call her a friend.”
Brentwood Academy graduate Allison Dove Gossett presented the award to Stewart. Gossett served as Youth in Government Governor in 2006.
“I am greatly honored to receive the Mike Buhl Award given in the name of a man who meant so much to the Model UN and Youth Legislature programs,” Stewart said. “Youth Legislature and Model UN have meant so much to the students at Brentwood Academy as well as to all of the students and advisors who have
attended. I know these programs will continue to thrive under the leadership of Susan Moriarty and her staff.”
Arthur “Mike” Buhl was an educator who spent more than 25 years volunteering with the YMCA Model Supreme Court and International Court of Justice, teaching students not only the importance of such bodies of governance, but
also about servant leadership and the importance of civic engagement.
Past recipients include:
2013 – Governor Winfield Dunn
2014 – Congressman Jim Cooper
2015 – Secretary of State Tre’ Hargett
2016 – Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey
The Tennessee YMCA Youth Legislature began in 1953. Since then the program has expanded from a small legislative conference to include all three branches of Tennessee government as well as a media and lobbyist component. In 1980, Model United Nations conference was added. In 2008, the Center for Civic Engagement became a program center of the YMCA of Middle Tennessee. At that
time the name Youth Legislature was changed to Youth in Government.
Currently, seven Model United Nations conferences and 11 Youth in Government conferences are held each year. In 2008, the Leadership Conference for the elected officers of Model United Nations and Youth in Government was added.
Tennessee’s program is the second largest YMCA program in the nation. This year, more than 6,000 students from over 130 different schools participated in Model United Nations and Youth in Government. That doesn’t include the nearly 300 volunteers who give generously of their time throughout the year.