State Superintendent Janet Barresi and State Board of Education members recognized and commended Perrin Duncan, a senior at Edmond North High School, and Mason Harvey, an eighth-grader at Guthrie Junior High School, as 2013 Prudential Spirit of Community Award Winners.
“This is a fantastic award in that it recognizes students who show selflessness in giving back to their communities in extraordinary ways,” Superintendent Barresi said. “I can think of no better definition of citizenship than to put the needs of others before yourself.”
Prudential Financial, in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), selects one middle- and one high-school student from each state and the District of Columbia as top youth volunteers each year.
The award is given to young Americans who show extraordinary service to others and contributions to their communities. The honorees will be recognized in Washington D.C. in May, and will have the chance to be named one of 10 top youth volunteers in the nation.
Perrin Duncan was co-chair of Edmond North’s Bring a Light to Others (BALTO) campaign in 2012. More than $282,000 was raised for the Sooner Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Mason Harvey has become a champion in the fight against childhood obesity. After losing 85 pounds in the seventh grade, he made it his mission to meet 85 famous people to help spread his message and is hosting or attending 85 events to help raise awareness of this issue.
The board also recognized Distinguished Finalists for the award:
Ellise Crawford, a senior at Grove High School, raised $50,000 to help build Emmanuel’s House in Ghana, West Africa, to shelter children recovered from slavery.
Garrett Dollins, a member of the Payne County 4-H and a senior at Perkins-Tryon High School, raised $1,400 to purchase first aid supplies for his school through his program “Scrap 4 Helping Schools.”
Elisabeth Willis, a member of the Pittsburg County 4-H and a junior at Canadian High School, has been an active volunteer with the Therapeutic Equestrian Association of McAlester, raising $10,000 to support the organization that helps children with special needs.
Kaylee Young, a member of the Cleveland County 4-H and a sophomore at Young Creations, has raised almost $11,000 and collected nearly 60,000 items for care packages for the military through The Hugs Project.