April 06, 2023

Letter from the Director April 2023

Dear Friends of Utah Global Diplomacy,

Last week, our international exchange program partners, Global Ties U.S. and the U.S. Department of State Office of International Visitors hosted its National Conference in Washington D.C. I am pleased to announce the recipient of its 2023 Citizen Diplomat Award was none other than our local partner Justin Powell, Executive Director of the Salt Lake City youth humanitarian organization Youthlinc

I had the honor and privilege of nominating Justin as a youth humanitarian activist dedicated to increasing international engagement and experiences for local people in Utah. As Executive Director of Youthlinc, he works to create lifelong humanitarians through local and global service and, in turn, inspire the next generation of global citizens.
Justin has been a long-time resource and interlocutor for international exchange visitors traveling to Salt Lake City, including many cohorts of the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP).

For example, Justin formed a partnership with an IVLP alum from Rwanda and the Utah State University (USU) Office of Global Engagement after a 2019 IVLP meeting. Through this connection, he and USU brought a group of students to plan and implement humanitarian projects in Rwanda. The USU students cited the life-changing impact of this work, noting precisely the opportunity to create long-lasting friendships and dispel the stereotype of a homogenous Africa.

Justin has not only amplified the International Visitor Leadership Program in the local community and worldwide, but his amplification has planted the seeds of international understanding and global engagement for generations to come.

Justin genuinely deserves the Citizen Diplomat Award because of his steadfast persistence in inspiring youth to pursue globally-focused careers and fostering future humanitarians who understand local and global needs. We are honored that Justin represented Utah's kindness, innovation, and volunteer spirit at this national conference.

Felecia Maxfield-Barrett
Executive Director 

Click here to read more about Justin Powell's work as a Citizen Diplomat in Utah.