Varnado High sophomore earns national recognition

Published 4:17 am Wednesday, January 9, 2019

LaDarrick Smith, a sophomore student at Varnado High School, has been chosen to receive the Outstanding Youth Leader Award during CADCA’s 29th Annual National Leadership Forum.

Smith was selected for this honor for being a youth leader who consistently goes above and beyond the call of duty to work diligently in his coalition. According to Rhonda Gunnell, president-elect of the Washington Parish Coalition on Human Services, Smith demonstrates a passion for making a positive impact in his community and works diligently to bring awareness to the coalition’s initiative in substance use prevention.

Because of his leadership efforts, Smith will receive an all-expense paid trip to the CADCA National Leadership Forum in Washington, D.C., during the week of Feb. 3-7. He is a member of the Washington Parish Youth Against Drugs Coalition, which is affiliated with ADAPT, Inc.

Smith is a member of his high school youth council. He considers himself a strong advocate for change. Smith has always possessed a passion to work for the betterment of his community. He is an active member of 4-H and serves on the State Executive Board as a southeast regional representative.

Smith is also a member of Future Farmers of America (FFA), where he is an Area IV officer and representative of approximately 150 schools throughout Louisiana. Through his involvement with these organizations, Smith has been able to serve and make an impact on the lives of those in his community. He serves as the youth sector representative for the Washington Parish Coalition on Human Services (WPCHS).

Gunnell said that Smith has provided valuable input on coalition activities. He strives to educate youth of the community on the harmful effects of substance abuse.

Smith is a member of the (CADCA) Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America’s National Youth Leadership Initiative Training of the Trainers program.

He is the son of Dedra and Eric Smith of Angie.