Sachit Gali, a Sarasota County high school student and president of the Youth Advocacy Board for Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT), was named the South Region Youth Advocate of the Year by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. This is one of the highest awards among the country’s top youth advocates working against tobacco.

Sachit was honored in Washington, D.C., on May 23 along with other U.S. regional winners, a group winner, and a national winner. More than 400 public health, political, civic and business leaders attended the annual Youth Advocates of the Year Awards gala to recognize these young leaders.

The Youth Advocates of the Year Awards honor outstanding young people who are among today’s most effective leaders in tobacco control. These youths have fought hard to protect their generation from the dangers of tobacco by promoting tobacco prevention legislation, exposing tobacco marketing to kids, and keeping their peers from using tobacco.

“Sachit is an outstanding leader in Florida’s SWAT movement and the Youth Advocacy Board, serving as president,” said Tobacco Free Florida SWAT Statewide Youth Coordinator LaDarius Gammage. “He is very deserving of this national recognition for his dedication to tobacco prevention. The Bureau of Tobacco Free Florida is incredibly proud of his many accomplishments and thanks him for his leadership in SWAT. His passion and efforts are helping to make the next generation tobacco free.”

“Sachit’s role(s) in tobacco prevention and awareness throughout Sarasota County have been tremendous,” said Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County Tobacco Prevention Specialist Jennifer Sadonis. “He has been instrumental in leading the local fight against tobacco through his leadership and advocacy skills. FDOH Sarasota is very proud of Sachit and all of his achievements in the various capacities in which he has served.”

As part of the award, Sachit will receive an educational scholarship and grant to continue his prevention efforts. He will also serve as an ambassador for the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

Sachit Gali recently graduated from Pine View School in Osprey. He has been a member of SWAT for the past six years and currently serves as its Statewide Chair. In addition to his role in SWAT, Sachit currently serves as Chair for the Tobacco Free Partnership of Sarasota County. In the recent past, he also served as a National Youth Ambassador for the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

SWAT is Florida’s statewide youth organization working to mobilize, educate and equip Florida youths to revolt against and de-glamorize Big Tobacco and the e-cigarette industry. SWAT is a united movement of empowered youth working towards a tobacco free future.

To learn more about Students Working Against Tobacco, visit www.swatflorida.com.

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