(Nov. 1, 2019) Ocean City native and country music artist, Jimmy Charles, was named one of the Ten Outstanding Young Americans by JCI USA in June, and he was presented his award during a ceremony on Sept. 28 at the Omni Hotel in Corpus Christi, Texas.
“It was an amazing, humbling weekend in Corpus Christi, receiving the Ten Outstanding Young Americans award knowing the amazing people that have been honored before me and the company of this year’s Ten Outstanding Young Americans,” he said. “I never expect awards for the work that I do and music I produce to inspire, but it lets me know it’s making an impact and will help me do even more moving forward. I am proud to bring the Ten Outstanding Young Americans award back to my hometown for the very first time.”
Each year, JCI USA (Jaycees International USA) recognizes the accomplishments of 10 people who are “truly outstanding in the areas of business or entrepreneurial accomplishment, political achievement, humanitarian and voluntary leadership, and more.”
The 10 individuals were selected from a field of nearly 60 nominations.
When Charles was told he would be receiving an award he felt “eternal joy [and] accomplishment.”
“Words cannot express the overwhelming feeling of gratitude I have accepting this prestigious honor,” Charles said in June. “Ten years ago, I left everything I knew with just a guitar and a dream. It was a turning point in my life and I knew I wanted to be a better man.
“I prayed on my long drive to Nashville not knowing what my future would hold, not for fame or fortune, but to use my passion and talent to help make a difference in the world,” he continued. “Everyone is given a gift and it’s how you choose to use that gift that is truly important in life.”
Since 1938, JCI USA has spotlighted young men and women (under the age of 40) who “best exemplify the finest attributes of America’s youthful achievers.”
Previous honorees include Bill Clinton (1979), John F. Kennedy (1946), Dick Cheney (1976), Kurt Warner (2010), Wayne Newton (1977), Gayle Sayers (1969), Elvis Presley (1970), Michele Tafoya (2001) and Ruth Riley (2014).
A national spokesman for Zero – The End of Prostate Cancer – since 2014, Charles was named Outstanding Young Tennessean in 2017. He was nominated for the Ten Outstanding Young Americans honor the last three years.
Charles is an “American Idol” alum and spokesperson for Zero, which raises awareness about prostate cancer, as well as a graduate of Stephen Decatur High School in Berlin.
He launched the I Am Not Alone nonprofit organization, which focuses on the strength and well-being of all cancer survivors, and the #IAmNotAlone Challenge, last August.
He released a country album, “Hard Way to Go,” in December and it received rave reviews.
His latest single, “We Are Warriors,” Charles said is “another anthem song for cancer survivors to come together and provide hope and strength.”
Charles’ upcoming single, “Never Had a Bad Day,” he said is “something very different from anything I’ve done before.”
“[It’s] all about positivity and changing the way you live your life,” he added.
For more information about Charles, visit his official website at www.jimmycharlesmusic.com or check out his Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.