Student Leadership Council, College Advisory Council,
& Student of the Year
The SADD National Student Leadership Council (SLC) and the College Advisory Council (CAC) play a major role in the continued success of SADD. Through a selective application process, these bright minds have been chosen to represent the organization because of the leadership and advocacy positions they have taken in their respective communities in the areas of traffic safety, substance abuse prevention, and personal health and safety.
This year’s SLC/CAC members hail from ten different states across the country – from Louisiana to Michigan, California to Pennsylvania. The SLC/CAC spearheads the planning of the National Conference every year and serves as an overall think tank for the organization’s direction. The group is represented on the SADD National Board of Directors by the Student of the Year, who chairs the SLC and by the Student of the Year Emeritus who chairs the CAC.
2017-2018 SADD National Student Leadership Council
Dylan Mullins, New Jersey–SADD National Student of the Year
Dylan is from Marlboro, New Jersey. He joined SADD at the end of his freshmen year of high school because he believed the organization’s peer-to-peer outreach was especially effective in making a lasting impact on his community. Dylan fondly remembers handing out lollipops with kind messages attached to remind his peers to make smart choices during prom season. Dylan will attend The George Washington University this Fall to study political science and economics.
Makayla Brown, California–VP of Advocacy
Makayla is from Temecula, California. She joined SADD her freshman year because she admired student leaders in her school and was inspired by the way they gave back to their community. One activity that Makayla is proud of organizing was an anti-distracted driving event, which was a huge success and a fun send-off into summer. She will be returning to high school for her senior year this Fall.
Emma Gaster, Alabama–VP of Communications
Emma is from Dothan, Alabama. She became involved with SADD because of her desire to make a difference in her community; Emma wanted to become a leader to inspire others to do the same. She is especially proud of a program that her SADD chapter started which provided underprivileged kindergarten families with a week’s worth of meals. In the fall, Emma will be attending the University of Alabama to pursue a degree in international business.
Maria Goldman, Pennsylvania–VP of Development
Maria is from Hershey, PA. She became involved with SADD her freshman year because of a family member’s struggle and subsequent success against alcoholism. Maria especially enjoyed when her SADD chapter brought in speakers to talk about mental health and substance abuse. In the fall, Maria will be a senior at Hershey High School and will also serve as the 2017-2018 Pennsylvania SADD Student of the Year.
Laurie McCreary, Louisiana–VP of Communications
Laurie is from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She helped to co-found her school’s SADD chapter and has also assisted in stimulating the growth of other chapters in various areas of Louisiana. Laurie has particularly enjoyed teaching important prevention lessons at a summer camp each year. This fall, she will be attending Southeastern Louisiana University to pursue degrees in English education and library sciences
Carlos Vela, Texas–VP of Events
Carlos is from Ingleside, Texas. He became involved with SADD because he wanted to inspire other students to make a positive change in their community. Carlos is especially proud of his SADD chapter’s efforts in campaigning for a comprehensive smoke-free ordinance in his town. This fall, Carlos will be attending Texas A&M University of Corpus Christi to major in bio-medical sciences, and hopes to pursue medical school after that.
Sommer Wilmeth, North Dakota–VP of Network Engagement
Sommer is from Bismarck, North Dakota. She was motivated to join SADD because of her passion for helping others and her desire to become a part of something bigger than herself. Her favorite SADD activity involved her school organizing a local fashion show before prom. The goal of this event was to promote positive self-body image, and to encourage her classmates to have a safe and fun prom. This fall, Sommer will be attending Minnesota State University to pursue an education in art instruction.
2017-2018 SADD National College Advisory Council
Kirtana Choragudi, Michigan – Student of the Year Emertius
Kirtana is a sophomore at the University of Michigan where she is pursuing a dual-degree in computer science and finance. Kirtana joined SADD at the start of high school as ‘just another club” but quickly became passionate about using the peer-to-peer method. Kirtana is incredibly proud of her chapter’s growth from 5 to over 70 active members. Outside of SADD, Kirtana enjoys providing free music/arts lessons in inner-city Detroit, teaching yoga, and working as an Instructional Assistant for introductory programming classes.
Bailey Bindle, Nebraska–VP of Communications
Reigning from small town Falls City, Nebraska, Bailey’s journey with SADD started her junior year at Falls City High School, where she founded her school’s chapter because she believed that the students were in need of a positive and welcoming group to promote healthy lifestyles. As a sophomore this year at Peru State College in Peru, Nebraska, Bailey is working toward a double major in criminal justice counseling and psychology.
Julio Mendez, California–VP of Network Engagement
Julio is an incoming third year student at UCLA, majoring in political science and minoring in public affairs. He joined SADD because of its mission and the power that SADD gave to regular young adults, like himself, to enact meaningful change. Julio is very proud of SADD’s role in influencing legislators and policymakers on the state and federal level to make our roads safer for young people through its advocacy program, SADD SPEAKs. This fall, Julio will be a legislative advocate in the office of the External Vice President at UCLA as part of student government and a peer learning facilitator at UCLA’s Academic Advancement Program.
Alyssa Royce, New Jersey–VP of Development
Alyssa has been involved with SADD for over five years now, taking leadership roles within her high school chapter, participating in SADD SPEAKs in 2015, and being on the 2016-2017 SADD National Student Leadership Council. Alyssa has interned this past summer for the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibly and has been fortunate enough to travel the country spreading SADD’s mission. She is enrolled in a dual degree program at Stockton University in Galloway, New Jersey, pursuing a Bachelor’s in accounting and a Master’s in business administration. Outside of SADD, Alyssa is a resident assistant, a sister of Delta Phi Epsilon sorority, enrolled in her university’s honors program, and a member of several on campus clubs and organizations.
Hope Wade, Tennessee–VP of Programs
Hope currently attends Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee. She is a biology major with a focus in pre-med and hopes to become a physician. Hope joined SADD to save the lives of the youth along side people who share the same passion. She is incredibly proud of co-founding her community’s new middle school chapter alongside the 2017-2018 SADD National Advisor of the Year, Brandon Smith.