Four new club directors have joined the team of youth educators at the United Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County (UBGC). They are Bryanne Morse (Lompoc), Eddie Gamboa (Downtown Santa Barbara), Sean Savatt (Goleta), and Alyssa Lozoya (Buellton/Solvang).
The new directors are united by their compassion and dedication to working with at youth facing socioeconomic challenges. Each site director brings a set of strengths, experiences and unique leadership style to their new role.
Historically, Boys & Girls Clubs are best led by “quiet leaders” who display lateral thinking, guide members by example, and listen to the diverse views of staff, parents, and youth members. The new directors were all chosen for their ability to lead in this way, and have already empowered local youth with new ideas and programs.
“I’m excited about this next phase for us because of our new professionals and what they bring to the table,” said UBGC chief executive Michael Baker.
Morse said the best part about her new role is being able to provide a safe environment for children in the community, giving them a space to express themselves and enjoy time with their peers.
“I’ve always had a passion for working with youth,” she said. Previously, Morse worked as a youth development specialist, and as a site coordinator for the San Luis Obispo Boys & Girls Club.
Since stepping into her current position in August, she has transformed the Lompoc unit and continues to make waves in the community by launching her own youth female empowerment group this fall.
Due to the merger between the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Barbara and the United Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County last year, Gamboa stepped up as Downtown Club director after serving for several months as assistant director. Gamboa said he aims to continue making a positive impact in the community.
“Everyone I meet here tells me stories about how the club has helped them or the community in the past, which pushes me to do the same for our current members,” he said. Gamboa’s top priority is always helping families, from assisting with remote learning and leading new programs to taking extra time to meet and listen to members and parents.
When he was 16, Savatt began volunteer coaching, putting his gentle nature and passion for helping children to use. Today, as the Goleta Club director, Savatt has the same drive for serving youth.
“The best part about my role is really getting to know each of the kids, their personalities, and their learning styles,” he said. Although he wears multiple hats in his role with UBGC, Savatt says it’s always worth it at the end of the day knowing he’s making a difference in children’s lives.
Lozoya is the most recent hire as the Buellton and Solvang Club director and helped revamp both units after they were forced to close during COVID-19. After becoming site supervisor for the ASES (After School Education & Safety) program in Lompoc, Lozoya realized she had a talent for working with children.
“I love coming up with engaging lesson plans. It’s so great when kids are excited to learn and participate,” she said. In her role as club director, Lozoya excels as a confident educator and warm-hearted mentor, allowing her members to have a safe space to learn and grow.