On Saturday, April 22nd, the top-10 finalists for the 2017 Youthlinc Utah Young Humanitarian Award will be interviewed at the University of Utah.

Meet the judges! These prominent Utah leaders in service, education, business, and politics are looking forward to meeting our top-10 finalists!

Erin Armstrong-Wright, Assistant to the President & COO,  George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation

Erin Armstrong-Wright is a Utah native and a graduate of the University of Utah in Behavioral Science & Health and Gerontology. Her experience at the University grounded her interest in serving within the community. Erin recently served as board member of the United States National Committee for the United Nation Women Utah Chapter. She also has been involved in scholarship fundraising and other projects with the Young Alumni Association at the University of Utah, serving as Vice President and board member. She also has volunteered at The Health and Human Rights Project teaching English to refugees.  Erin is the assistant to the President & COO at the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation. She enjoys the many engaging associations and activities that stem from her involvement with the Foundation and its varied projects. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking throughout the state, cooking good food, and spending time with family and friends.  She lives in Salt Lake with her husband Kevin.

Bill Crim, President & COO, United Way of Salt Lake 

Bill Crim serves as President and CEO of United Way of Salt Lake (UWSL). Most recently, he worked as UWSL’s Senior Vice President of Collective Impact and Public Policy. He has worked for over 23 years on issues related to economic opportunity, health care, education and poverty – first as a research fellow for the Coalition on Human Needs in Washington, D.C. and then as a researcher, policy analyst, community organizer, lobbyist, and executive director for Utah Issues.  Bill joined UWSL in 2004 to help in its successful transformation to the Collective Impact business model. He led a team that created and implemented UWSL’s public policy strategy, establishing the organization as an influential leader within Utah’s local and state policy environment. In 2013, Bill helped facilitate the first “pay for success” transaction for early childhood education, helping make high-quality preschool available to 600 additional low-income children in several communities in Utah. He has been appointed by Utah’s Governor to serve on the Utah State Health Data Committee, the Utah State Homeless Coordinating Committee, and the Utah Commission on Volunteers, and previously served on the Utah State Workforce Investment Board.  Bill began his career with the Utah Issues Center for Poverty Research and Action, where he served as Executive Director. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Utah with a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science, and is married with two sons.

Dr. Melissa Yack Hall, Executive Director, Weber State University’s Center for Community Engaged Learning

Melissa Yack Hall is executive director for Weber State University’s (WSU) Center for Community Engaged Learning. She also is a faculty affiliate in WSU’s Teacher Education Department. Prior to joining WSU, Melissa spent 10 years as program manager of the University of Utah’s Master of Public Administration. She serves as an adviser to several local nonprofits and other organizations. Melissa’s research focuses on community development and collaborations among nonprofit, public and private organizations. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Utah in educational, leadership and policy. Melissa enjoys skiing, yoga, hiking and biking with her family and friends.

Dr. Steven Hirase, Superintendent, Murray City School District

Dr. Steven Hirase began his duties as superintendent of the Murray City School District on July 1, 2011 after 32 years as an educator, most of which have been spent in the Murray City School District. Dr. Hirase was hired in 1987 as principal of Grant Elementary School and after 4 years was appointed Director of Special Education, a position he held for seven years. He was then named Assistant Superintendent over Curriculum and Instruction, where he continued for 13 years until becoming superintendent of schools. Prior to coming to Murray, he held the position of the first principal of the Utah State Prison School. Dr. Hirase is married to educator Sue Hirase; they are the parents of four children.


Representative Sandra Hollins, Utah House of Representatives

Sandra Hollins was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, and has been a resident of Salt Lake City for the past 25 years. Sandra and her husband David currently reside in Fair Park with their two daughters.  Sandra is a member of Utah House of Representative where she proudly serves District 23. In the House of Representative she is a member of the Social Services Appropriations, Health and Human Services, Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice and Child Welfare oversight panel. This year, she was elected into leadership as the House Minority Caucus Manager.  When she is not on the hill, Sandra is a licensed clinical social worker, and the primary focus of her career has been on substance abuse treatment and advocacy services for Salt Lake City’s homeless population. Sandra received her bachelor’s degree in business management from the University of Phoenix and her master’s degree in social work from the University of Utah.

Elizabeth  Morales, 2016 Award Finalist

As a first-generation student, Elizabeth has worked tirelessly to increase college access for marginalized populations. She started by volunteering with TRiO where she recruited and mentored minority high school students in their transition to college. Elizabeth later became a Diversity Scholar through the Center of Equity and Diversity where she mentored and tutored underrepresented students through the partnership of Adelante in Jackson Elementary. One of her greatest accomplishments while being a student at the University of Utah has been creating a program with Innovation Scholars and the Lassonde Institute to promote diversity into the Business School, Entrepreneur Institute, and STEM programs. Elizabeth will be pursing a Master’s Degree in Student Affairs in Higher Education at Colorado State University this fall.

Cecilee Price-Huish, Youthlinc Board Member

Cecilee Price-Huish is a long time advocate of developing young humanitarians – starting with her own five children. A few years ago, her family visited Soweto, South Africa, and in anticipation, her then young children hosted a concert to raise money for sports equipment for schools in Soweto. Since then, she and her family have been extensively involved with multiple humanitarian and medical projects benefiting people in Haiti and Honduras, and locally for the Road Home Homeless Shelter. Two of her children have participated on four Youthlinc international service trips to Cambodia, Peru, Nepal and Kenya, respectively. Cecilee is a graduate of Southern Methodist University School of Law and has worked as a real estate attorney as well as a Pro Bono attorney for victims of domestic abuse. She currently serves on the Board of Trustees for Lakeview Hospital, multiple PTA Boards and is a choir and musical theater director at her children’s school.

Sean Reyes, Utah Attorney General

Sean Reyes was appointed Utah’s 21st Attorney General at the end of 2013 and elected a year later in what has been called a landslide victory. When he was first sworn in he pledged to restore trust in the Utah Attorney General’s Office. Now, almost three years later, AG Reyes and his office have been awarded multiple Best of State awards and the rare honor of receiving recognition from The Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative at the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business.  AG Reyes graduated summa cum laude from Brigham Young University and earned his law degree with honors from U.C. Berkeley. He practiced for nearly fourteen years at Parsons Behle & Latimer, the largest private law firm in the State, where he became one of the first minority lawyers to make partner at a major Utah firm. Most recently, he served as General Counsel for a Utah media and technology company.  Sean and his wife, Saysha, spend their free time cheering on their five sons and one daughter in sports, music and scholarly achievements. Sean enjoys playing morning basketball, coaching his kids in youth football, baseball, basketball, volleyball and soccer, spending a free moment with Saysha, watching Sports Center, attending and speaking at Comic Cons, as well as cooking, shooting guns and watching mixed martial arts (now that his fighting days are over).  And… if you really want to be impressed, ask him to rap!

Devin D. Thorpe, Your Mark on the World  & Rotary District 5420

Devin D. Thorpe was a finance guy until he realized life wasn’t all about the money. Now, he calls himself a champion of social good. He travels extensively as a volunteer doing service, as a journalist finding heroes and as a speaker sharing what he’s learned. As a Forbes Contributor he covers social entrepreneurship and impact investing, reaching an audience of over 1 million people. He’s produced over 800 episodes of his Your Mark on the World show featuring luminary change agents. His books—read over 1 million times—help people use money for good. To tell stories, he draws on his entrepreneurial finance experience as an investment banker, CFO, treasurer, and mortgage broker. Previously he worked on the U.S. Senate Banking committee staff and earned an MBA at Cornell.

We also want to recognize our Application Judges who each dedicated 10-15 hours reviewing and ranking applications to narrow down our top-10 finalists!