It’s that time of year again — time to recognize the best of the best in Oakdale from businesses to students as the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce presents merits of distinction at a special awards night ceremony, Friday, Jan. 18 at 6 p.m. in the community center.
The Oakdale Chamber of Commerce will honor members of the community for Citizen of the Year, Junior Achievement, Community Service, Business of the Year and Lifetime Achievement. The purpose is to honor individuals, organizations and businesses who have worked unselfishly to improve the Oakdale community and help others.
This week, nominees for Junior Achiever are profiled, along with the Community Service honoree. Information is presented as provided by the chamber.
Next week, look for nominees for Citizen of the Year and Business of the Year and, on Jan. 16, Lifetime Achievement recipient Frank Clark will be featured.
Junior Achievement Nominees this year are: Anne Homer, Candy Jauregui, Madison Lane, Garrett Paulus, Cameron Sluggett and Shayann Trent.
Anne Homer is a dedicated, eighth grade student at Oakdale Junior High School who always strives to do her best. She is in honors classes and has earned a 4.0 each semester. Anne is in her fifth year playing soccer for a travel team in Oakdale. She also volunteers her time at St. Mary’s Church. Anne has also been a member during seventh and eighth grades, of the California Scholarship Federation at Oakdale Junior High School.
Anne has helped others and has learned to be a kind and giving young girl. She always thinks of others and is a great example to her peers. She has volunteered her time helping in her church’s Bible study classes and fundraisers. She has also volunteered for Oakdale Junior High School’s crab feed. Anne is a great example of the many youths in our community and her selfless dedication to others, which is why the community nominated her for Junior Achievement.
Candy Jauregui is a straight “A” student at Oakdale Junior High School. She participates in the Leadership program at her school. She always comes to school on time, with her homework neat and complete. She is often up late doing her homework because she puts others first. She is very caring to others, would help anyone in need and is considerate of everyone. She believes it’s worth her time to help someone, just to see a smile on someone’s face.
Candy always gives of her own time to help with things around her school and in the community. Every day, Candy spends her lunch break helping others, including helping teachers with any work they have. She doesn’t care how big the task is, she always gets it done. Her reason for helping the teachers is so they will have more time with their families.
Everyday Candy finds ways to help someone from her lunchtime to after school. She has received many citizenship awards, including an award from summer camp for being the most helpful. Candy’s own words will describe why she is a nominee for Junior Achievement. When she receives recognition for an award, she will often say, “Those are just papers, my true award is the admiration of my family, teachers, and peers.”
Madison Lane is a senior at Oakdale High School who strives to make an impact at the high school and throughout the community. Madison is a leader on campus in the area of academics, and currently ranks number two in her graduating class. She is lead chair of the 12-time Stanislaus County Champion Academic Decathlon Team, and was a member of last year’s team that finished ninth in the State. In the past three years, she has won 18 medals at the County level and also medaled last year in the subject of Economics at the State Competition. Madison also competes as a member of the Science Olympiad Team, having won 13 medals at the County level and one at last year’s State competition, is a member of the Model UN Delegation, and recently placed second in the County-wide American Heritage Essay Scholarship competition.
Madison has enjoyed working with school administrators this year in several ways. She was honored to be appointed as the student representative on the OJUSD Board of Trustees as a full voting member, an opportunity unique to OJUSD; she serves as a student representative for the OHS committee that is addressing the school’s accreditation with the WASC Accrediting Commission; and she organized and administered a school-wide staff presentation about the rights of LGBT students and how best to combat slurs in the classroom.
Madison is regarded as a leader among her peers, having been voted to several leadership positions including: Treasurer of Interact Club, Vice President of the Science Club, Vice President of the Oakdale Youth Advisory Council, President of the California Scholarship Federation, and President of the Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) Club. She has participated in many activities that benefit the community of Oakdale, including Love Oakdale, River Cleanup Day, Trees for Troops, Caroling for Cans, and the homecoming planning committee. As President of the GSA Club, she is currently planning the Third Annual “Rainbow Prom,” an alternative prom for gay students and allies who may face discrimination at their respective high school proms. Her responsibilities include grant writing and fundraising, publicizing to other GSA clubs in surrounding schools, and partnering with the local PFLAG organization for ticket sales.
Madison has achieved many community accomplishments so far and we look forward to many more from this motivated young lady.
Garrett Paulus is a young man with responsibility and integrity. He possesses an amazing self-driven desire to succeed in all he does. Garrett takes part in many activities, and does so while maintaining a 4.0 GPA. At school he participates in the afterschool Leadership program, Science Olympiad and Cross Country. Whether it is at school, sports, church or in the community, Garrett is not hesitant to get involved. And when he commits to something, he follows through and always does a quality job. He improves and contributes simply by being accountable.
Garrett’s contributions are many, but one that stands out for 2012 is his one week volunteering for St. Mary’s Vacation Bible School. As a teen volunteer, he requested to be with the group of 4 and 5 year olds, the most energetic bunch of kids. He assisted the children with crafts, songs, dance moves, skits, prayer, etc. He did it all with a smile and a servants heart. Garrett also volunteers to sell tickets at sports events, planning, decorating and setting up for school dances and rallies. Garrett is also part of a group of youths that serve dinner at the Gospel Mission in Modesto for the homeless. When Garrett is not at school, he attends piano lessons, Boy Scouts, Confirmation Classes and church youth activities. If Garrett conducts himself in his future adult working-life like he does each day in his school life, he will have well-deserved success in his chosen career.
Cameron Sluggett graduated from Oakdale Charter High School in December 2012. During his high school years, he participated in Christian Mission trips to help build shelters, owns his own landscaping business (Sluggett Landscaping) and a DJ business (Sluggett Productions). Currently, Cameron is donating his landscaping skills of design and implementation to the new The River church in Oakdale. He coordinated and was DJ for a dance as an alternative for local teens on Halloween. The purpose was to keep his peers safe while having fun. Cameron also DJs for Oakdale Elementary and Junior High dances.
Cameron has a disability that affects his fine motor skills; yet, this has never stopped him from reaching his goals. Cameron is an amazing young man with altruistic, entrepreneurial spirit. He is positive in all he does, adding both beauty and hope to every situation he touches.
Shayann Trent is an honor roll student with perfect attendance at Oakdale Junior High School. Shayann is in sports, academics and since a very young age, has been an awesome volunteer in our community. She is active with helping raise money for the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life, and has been on the top fundraising team for the past two years. Shayann works extra hard and gives her time selflessly in her quest to put an end to cancer. She has donated her hair twice to help cancer patients so that they may have quality wigs after their chemotherapy treatments. Shayann has a sweet spirit and is always willing to help. Shayann is an excellent example of how Oakdale pride lives on its youth.
Community Service Award
The Kiwanis Club of Oakdale was the sole nominated service group for the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce annual award dinner, which will be held Friday, Jan. 18 at the Community Center.
The Kiwanis Club of Oakdale was established on April 3, 1952. Kiwanis is a thriving organization of service and community minded men and women, who support children and young adults around the world. The weekly meetings offer an atmosphere of fun, learning and fellowship. Club service projects offer members an opportunity to make a direct impact on the life of a child in their community. Kiwanis does one major fundraiser a year, and the rest of the year, they sponsor and volunteer their time to help children and their families, and the Oakdale community through scholarships, events and sponsorships.
Their contributions for 2012 include the Annual Kids Spring Fest and Safety Day, Halloween Parade and Festival, Library books, Christmas Food Sharing Program, Adopt-a-Highway (two-mile stretch on the North entrance of Highway 120), Children’s Crisis Center, College Scholarships, Oakdale Youth Softball and Baseball, Hope of America Awards, Adopt-a-Park, Sixth Grade Trip to Washington DC Scholarships, and the Festival of Trees. Some of the monetary donations have been to the Boy Scouts to help with utility costs when they meet at the Youth Building, City of Oakdale Recreation Scholarship Program and to the Sober Grad Night for OHS Seniors program. The outcome of the Kiwanis’ services and events have educated and supported children and youth in the community. Through these efforts, Kiwanis also has assisted with providing free events so families can participate in safe and fun community programs, and to help beautify the community.
Kiwanis Club of Oakdale has been nominated for this award because of how involved the entire club is in the Oakdale community throughout the year. They are a group of individuals that truly enjoy coming together to make a difference in the Oakdale Community.
Tickets for the Jan. 18 awards night dinner and ceremony are on sale now at the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce and on the Oakdale Chamber website for $40 per person. Seating is limited; reserve your tickets by Friday, Jan. 11.
For more information, call 847-2244.