Youth Governors Association

YGA Overview

The YMCA Youth Governors Association (YGA), modeled on the National Governors Association (NGA), brings together high school students serving as the Governor (or equivalent Presiding Officer role) of their YMCA Youth and Government state programs:

Youth Governors Association Members

Membership in the YGA begins after a Youth Governor (or equivalent role) is elected by their YMCA Youth and Government state program. If you have been elected by your state, please fill out the membership application below:

YGA Membership Application

The YGA convenes virtually throughout the year during monthly YGA Meetings, as well as in Washington, D.C. for the annual YMCA Youth Governors Conference each June.


YGA Leadership

The Youth Governors Association is led by our Chair and Vice Chair, elected each year the Youth Governors Conference alongside the Members-at-Large from each YGA Region, which encourage collaboration between their respective states:

Chair Vice Chair
Noah Weyne (NC) Jae Kim (NY)
2022-2023 2022-2023
Members-at-Large YGA Region
Katie Taffe (MN) Midwest Region
Aaron Fernandes (MA) Northeast Region
Daniel Gonzalez (TX) Southeast Region
Ava Castro-DeVarona (CA) West Region
Andrew O’Neal (WV) Youth Cabinets

The YGA Chair also serves on the YMCA of the USA’s Government Relations Advisory Committee, which advises Y-USA on advocacy and policy priorities.


YGA Initiative & Task Forces

The YGA Initiative is selected each year during the Youth Governors Conference as a nationwide collaboration between all YGA Members.

In addition to supporting the YGA Initiative, each YGA Member also serves on one of three YGA Task Forces, which address a specific issue facing youth in their states:

YGA Initiative | 2022-23
Strengthening Civics Education
Task Forces | 2022-23 Co-Chairs
Engaging Local Officials Diya Bardwell (DC)
Riley Stoddard (PA)
Voting Rights Gulnessa Asif (OK)
Hinke Younger (VA)
Youth Mental Health Danica Chakroborty (NJ)
Lillian Yang (AK)

A final briefing on the YGA Initiative, as well as summaries of the work by each YGA Task Force, is included as part of the YMCA Youth Governors Report that showcases legislation signed into law by YMCA Youth Governors over the past year.