2017 YES Conference Student Advisory Council

This advisory council will act in an advisory capacity to the Spare the Air Youth Program especially on matters relating to 2017 Youth for the Environment and Sustainability (YES) Conference. Student Advisory Council members will be responsible for representing the youth voice in the San Francisco Bay Area community. The Council members will be individuals who can contribute different skillsets to the group and together make a cohesive Student Advisory Council.

Council members may recommend programs to Air District or MTC staff that would encourage positive youth experiences and or coordinate their own events or programs to allow youth and teens to have an increased involvement with the YES Conference. Meeting topics may include current events relating to teens such as education pressures and expectations, environmental concerns, environmental health concerns, community involvement and or specific local issues that Bay Area teens face as they strive to make change in their school communities. Subcommittee meetings revolve around public relations, sponsorship, and leadership development goals for the 2017 YES Conference.

Council members should be Bay Area residents during the 2016-2017 school year and between the ages of 12 -18. For those appointed to the Council, they will serve a one-year term, August – March. Council members may track their meeting and event time as volunteer/ community service hours. Air District staff can sign-off on documents from school or other agencies as necessary. Council members will receive public recognition at the YES Conference and a certificate and or verification letter at the conclusion of their term.

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Shannon Yang

Shannon Yang is currently a senior at Henry M. Gunn Senior High School in Palo Alto. She is a member of the City of Palo Alto's environmental activism teen initiative, Project Enybody (ENY stands for Earth Needs You), and has helped organize events such as GreenFest and the Great Race for Saving Water. Last year, as a student in AP Environmental Science, Shannon had the opportunity to represent Gunn at the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Ocean Plastic Pollution Summit for students and teachers across California. Shannon brings her communications savvy to the YES Conference in the Public Relations and Leadership Development Sub-Committees. In addition to climate change, Shannon is passionate about mental health and social justice.


Starla Hellums

Starla Hellums, is a senior at Antioch High School. After high school she plans on attending Sacramento State to study Chemistry and Biology to become a radiologist. She enjoys playing with animals, volunteering at elderly facilities, and hanging out with friends. Born in Walnut Creek California, and raised all over the Bay Area, Starla’s inspiration comes from her older brother who she says, “has a huge impact on my life. We're only 14 months apart so we are very close. He always pushes me to do better, and to never give up.”

Starla believes: "The best way to predict the future, is to create it"


Noah Preute

Noah is currently a senior at St. Vincent de Paul High School in Petaluma. He discovered Spare the Air through a leadership program, Tomorrow's Leaders Today. He swims at his school and is an active youth volunteer at his parish. He is very passionate about bringing change in his own community. Noah is an amazing journalist and great at fund development and serves on the Public Relations Sub-Committee and the Fundraising Sub-Committees.


Nadia Ralston

Nadia Ralston, is a junior at Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland. Nadia has enjoyed pouring her energy into making the YES Conference even more awesome by securing sponsors for the event as an integral part of the Fundraising Sub-Committee. She has always had a passion for environmental and global developmental justice which has motivated her to start her own Global Awareness Club and become a Students for Sustainability (S4S) Leader at her high school as well as participate in other similar clubs and activities.

Little Known Fact: When Nadia isn’t too busy, she loves playing soccer, lacrosse, tennis, and biking around her neighborhood.


Jarrod Marshall

Jarrod is a sophomore in the Environmental Academy at Antioch High School. Jarrod loves being on social media and hanging out with his friends. He puts his social media skills to the test as part of the Public Relations Committee. Jarrod has two loving parents that he looks up to so much! As an aspiring shoe designer, maybe we will see more sustainably made shoe products in the future.

Jarrod lives by the quote: Work for a cause, not for applause.