VHS student wins award

Published 4:09 am Wednesday, March 6, 2019

LaDarrick Smith, a sophomore student at Varnado High School, recently received an all-expense paid trip to the CADCA Forum in Washington, D.C., where he received the prestigious National Youth Leadership Award.

Smith is the son of Dedra and Eric Smith of Angie. He is a member of the Washington Parish Youth Against Drugs Coalition that is sponsored through ADAPT, Inc. According to Rusty Fornea, Executive Director of ADAPT, Smith’s auto-biography and picture was featured in the CADCA Forum program.

“Smith is bringing much recognition to our parish and people at the national level are paying attention to his passionate message of being the change you want to see in your community,” Fornea said.

Smith is a first-year member of the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America’s (CADCA) National Youth Leadership Initiative Training of the Trainers program. He has been actively involved in training youth to be proactive members of their community.

Smith addressed forum attendees at the closing ceremony, which consisted of over 3,000 adults and 800 youth from all across the nation. In his speech, Smith stated that “we must be willing to take action to turn your dreams, thoughts and ideas into reality.”

He said that “we must believe that we can make a difference and be committed to making change happen.”

Smith received a standing ovation and special recognition from Major General Arthur Dean, Chairman/CEO of CADCA.