SA Youth Honors Three Community Leaders During Briscoe Friends of Youth Awards

SA Youth honored Councilman Rey Saldaña; Katie Harvey, CEO of KGBTexas Communications; and Kim Lubel, president and CEO of CST Brands, for their contributions to the community and youth during the 2016 Briscoe Friends of Youth Awards May 25 at the Briscoe Western Art Museum. 

“These three individuals have encouraged thousands of inner-city kids to succeed in life. They are also role models in business and in life, encouraging the next generation of leaders to spread their wings and reach for the stars,” Cynthia Le Monds, SA Youth president & CEO, said. 

The Briscoe Friends of Youth Award is named after the late Texas Governor Dolph Briscoe, who supported many charitable efforts in San Antonio and Texas, including SA Youth. His generosity in giving was truly remarkable, and in honor of him, and his family, SA Youth renamed the award with the family's blessing, Le Monds said.

Councilman Saldaña, who was given the Champion of Youth Award, has always been committed to giving back to the Alamo City. As a senior at South San Antonio High School, he helped organize Books in the Barrio, a grassroots effort to attract and maintain a bookstore in South San Antonio. The effort resulted in the opening of a Walden's Bookstore in South Park Mall

Long a deep believer in the importance of education, he returned to San Antonio after completing his studies at Stanford to address educational challenges in the city. He previously served as a field representative for Tutors with Computers, the largest supplemental educational services provider in Texas. The program aims to improve students' academic outcomes by targeting low-income families and providing free in-home tutoring assistance to students in local school districts.

"As a South San High School graduate, it is truly an honor to be recognized by an organization that strives to promote positive healthy environments where opportunities for students are not limited by socioeconomic factors,” Saldaña said. “SA Youth is an important part of the lives of students in the South San Antonio Independent School District and their efforts to encourage students to reach their full potential does not go unnoticed. Their holistic approach to gauging community needs and providing support to students inside and outside the classroom is remarkable. Thanks to SA Youth in my community, I am reassured that there are individuals as committed as I am to ensuring that every student is offered as many opportunities to be successful.”

Harvey, who received the Corporate Friend of Youth Award, founded KGBTexas when she was just 24. She didn’t start with a lot of resources, but she made up for it with the conviction that she could build something great. Today, her agency is comprised of 40 communications professionals in San Antonio and Houston, and it boasts a client list that includes some of the most prestigious companies in America.

“It has been a true honor to work with the incredible board and staff of SA Youth over so many years,” Harvey said. “To watch this organization grow and continue to serve the needs of our youth in San Antonio is a testament to everyone involved. Our children are our greatest gifts and God calls on us to ensure their safety and development.  SA Youth has answered that call, and it’s up to each of us to ensure that it continues to meet the growing needs of our youth.”

Lubel, who was given the Friend of Youth Award, served in various executive management roles at Valero Energy Corp., where she was the lead lawyer on over $18 billion of acquisitions, helping grow the company from a small, regional refiner to one of international scope. Lubel was named to Fortune’s 50 Most Powerful Women in 2013 and again in 2015, and was named Retail Leader of the Year by Convenience Store News in 2014.

“I am honored to be selected for this award by an organization that does so much to help at-risk youth in San Antonio,” Lubel said. “SA Youth provides programs and support to help kids realize not only their potential, but their dreams too.”

Sponsors of the 2016 Briscoe Friends of Youth Awards are Najim Family Foundation, NuStar, Valero, Silver Eagle Distributors, Catto & Catto, TETCO, KGBTexas Communications, and Norton Rose Fulbright.