Friday, June 2, 2023

SYAC Wraps Up A Successful Year

As the Southlake Youth Action Commission wraps up another successful year, City staff are already planning for the 2023-2024 academic year.

The Southlake Youth Action Commission (SYAC) held its final meeting on Monday, May 8. Southlake Mayor John Huffman visited the group as a guest speaker and answered questions about city leadership.

SYAC is a group of Southlake and Carroll ISD high school students interested in local government and leadership. They bring youth-related issues to the City Council’s attention and participate in community service projects annually.

Here’s a look at what SYAC accomplished during the 2022-2023 school year:

  • Conducted three clean-up sessions on Shady Oaks Dr. as part of the Adopt-A-Street Program
  • Developed a comprehensive marketing plan for the Southlake Arts Council’s Southlake Presents Art Show and Competition
  • Attended the Texas Municipal League’s YAC Summit in Dallas
  • Participated in Intern Day with key city staff members and departments to learn more about local government
  • Presented to City Council during their April 18 meeting

Participating in SYAC is a great way to earn volunteer hours while giving back to the community. Previous SYAC members have secured internships with the City and have gotten accepted into prestigious college programs.

As this year closes, we look forward to next year’s cohort. If you are an exceptional student looking to get more involved in your community, learn about leadership, and participate in local government, submit your application today! Applications are due on August 30, 2023.


SKIL Youth Leadership Program Kicks-Off Their First Meeting!

The youth leadership group Southlake Kids Interested in Leadership (SKIL) kicked off its first meeting of the year last night.

After a rigorous selection process, the 24 emerging leaders were welcomed by Mayor John Huffman, Councilmember Kathy Talley, Carroll Senior High School Principal Ryan Wilson, Teacher Eddie Morman, and City staff members Daniel Cortez and Bora Sulollari at their orientation meeting.

Mayor Huffman, Councilmember Kathy Talley, and Director of Economic Development and Tourism Daniel Cortez spoke to the students about the significance of leadership and why their participation matters. “These students will serve as the youth voice for our community for the next year, and we are thrilled to get to work with the 8th SKIL group and focus on leadership development and civic engagement.” said liaison Daniel Cortez.

During the meeting, students were asked to provide their thoughts on the following:

  • What does leadership mean to you?
  • What do you hope to learn from SKIL?
  • What do you think is the most important thing local government does for you?

Below are a few of their responses:

“Leadership to me is being a positive example to those around, me and being a person to depend on in tough situations.”
“Serving your community and being the change, you want to see.”
“Being a dependable and inspirational influence on others.”
“I hope to learn how to be a more confident public speaker. Also, I want to learn how to better lead a group.”
“I want to learn more about my strengths and weaknesses.”
“Improving the daily lives of citizens and managing logistics that ensure the ease and safety of its people is the most important thing local government does for me.”
“Setting up infrastructure to not only improve the quality of our lives, but also to protect our future.”


Mayor Huffman, Councilmember Kathy Talley, the school district, and City staff are so excited to see all that this class accomplishes!

For more information about SKIL, please visit

SKIL students listed in alphabetical order: Andrea Aguilar Villalobos, Anacapri Ciccone, Carter Weiss, Charissa Wang, Cole Findlay, Dillan DeLugo, Elizabeth Grace Knight, Ford Renner, Greta Neiman, Jaiden Mehta, Jonathan Jose, Katalin Burtea, Ketan Tamirisa, Mateo Bryce, Matthew Blount, Nicole Beres, Nikhil Reddy, Raine Ducey, Safiy Islam, Sahasra Kandukuri, Shreeya, Gogia, Taksheel Aileni, William Hao, and Yuki Pilon.