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Club honors Youth of the Year#039;

Six community-minded area seniors were honored on May 8 at the Greenville Exchange Club’s &uot;Youth of the Year&uot; and &uot;Ace&uot; Awards Banquet held at the Greenville High School cafeteria.

Jonathan Brogden of McKenzie High School; Rodney Wilkerson of Greenville High School; Meredith Mosley of Fort Dale Academy and Tatiana Richards of Greenville High School were each nominated by their schools as Youth of the Year candidates for their high standards of &uot;citizenship, leadership, scholarship, sportsmanship, community service and attendance&uot;, said Exchange Club member Lou Davison.

Judge Barry Branum introduced the four nominees, who then each shared a thought-provoking essay written on the subject ,

&uot;Igniting the Spirit of Volunteerism Across America&uot;.

Brogden described volunteerism as &uot;a powerful and practical way to show our concern for others.&uot;

Mosley shared many statistics on the positive impact volunteerism has on those who do the sharing.

Wilkerson reminded those in attendance to &uot;be kind and generous every day, for it is good for the soul.&uot;

Richards discussed ways to make youth more aware of the many opportunities to volunteer in their local communities.

Mosley, FDA’s valedictorian and the 2001 female &uot;Achiever&uot; award winner, continued her winning streak by being named the Exchange Club’s Youth of the Year for 2001.

She plans to attend Auburn in the fall, where she will major in pre-veterinary medicine and play on the university’s tennis team.

Brodgen is continuing his education at Troy State University while Wilkerson says he plans to attend the University of Alabama in Birmingham.

Richards will study at the University of Alabama.

Two other Butler County seniors, Georgian High School’s Leonardus Johnson and Greenville High School’s Monica Bradley, were recipients of the Ace Award which is given to students &uot;who overcome great physical, mental and /or social obstacles to become high achievers,&uot; explained club member Marie Folmar.

Johnson was praised for his &uot;dramatic improvement in attitude and academic performance&uot; after moving to Georgiana from a crime and poverty-ridden urban area in the North.

Homeroom teacher Folmar described Johnson as &uot;a pleasant and fine young man.&uot;

Bradley, a single mother, was lauded for successfully juggling full-time employment at Shoney’s with her studies and her responsibilities as a mom.

Bradley maintained a 3.7 academic average at GHS and has received a scholarship to Alabama State University.

All of the students were commended for their outstanding achievements and encouraged by Exchange Club President Abbie Jackson to &uot;seek out or start a club in their schoolsserve wherever you are as volunteers.&uot;