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12 News Reporter Charly Edsitty Visits Lehi Boys and Girls Club

12 News reporter and Native American journalist Charly Edsitty (center) shares her story with members of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale, Lehi Branch, on a recent evening. Submitted photo

The Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale (BGCS), Lehi Branch, welcomed a special guest speaker on January16 when 12 News reporter and Native American journalist Charly Edsitty stopped by.

If you’re a fan of visual journalism, you might know Edsitty (Navajo) and her work as a multimedia journalist for the NBC affiliate in Phoenix.

In Lehi, Edsitty met with girls participating in the confidence-building SMART Girls teen program (Skills Mastery and Resilience Training).

“The message to the group was focused on female empowerment, the importance of good choices, and positivity,” Edsitty said. “It’s so important for me to speak with Native youth because they are the future and need to be encouraged to strive for greatness. There is so much potential for our young people, and it’s really exciting to think about their futures and what they will do.”

12 News reporter Charly Edsitty (center) with a group of teens and staff members in Lehi at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale. Edsitty (Navajo) was a special club guest speaker in January.
Photos courtesy of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale, Lehi branch.
SMART is a 10-week health, fitness, prevention and self-esteem enhancement program for adolescent and teen girls. The program is designed to encourage healthy lifestyles and attitudes.

Tamara Littlesalt, BGCS vice president of Native American and Community Services, said SMART is committed to developing the country’s next generation of leaders.

“Programs like SMART Girls are centered around community service, advocacy and activism, designed to foster young people’s integrity and good character, their ability to make positive life choices, their belief that they can bring about positive change, and their compassion and willingness to serve others,” she said.

Littlesalt praised Edsitty’s career. “Charly is an ideal guest speaker for our SMART Girls program, especially with her current role at 12 News,” Littlesalt said.

Edsitty has been with 12 News since 2013. She’s a graduate of Glendale’s Cactus High School and Baylor University in Texas. She completed internships with CBS News in New York City, The White House and the Farmington Daily Times in New Mexico.

Charly Edsitty (center) met with SMART Girls program participants at the Lehi Boys and Girls Club. Edsitty shared her life experiences and encouraged the teens to dream big.
“As a Native journalist, I am motivated by tremendous support from tribal communities who are happy to see a Native journalist covering stories from our communities in the mainstream media,” Edsitty said. “We have been overlooked and forgotten for far too long, and it’s long overdue that the stories that are important in our communities get some attention.”