Four outstanding young students have been nominated for Junior Achievement Honors through the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce. The award will be presented at the annual Oakdale Chamber of Commerce 72nd Awards Dinner on Friday, Jan. 19 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Bianchi Community Center.
Nominated for recognition as the junior achievers were high school students Breanna Morgan, Marnelle Salie and Natalie Thompson, as well as junior high student Marissa Raggio. Profiles of the nominees follow, with information provided through the Chamber of Commerce.
Breanna Morgan has been on the honor roll most of her school life. Breanna is a very giving person who looks out for people and is always willing to help in any way she can, she loves being involved.
Breanna takes a very active part in whatever endeavor she pursues, whether it is Varsity Tennis, FFA, 4-H, Leadership in school, or the International Order of Rainbow for Girls. She has been a member of the Tennis team for four years and she lettered in this as a sophomore. This year she was Team Captain and planned a fun day for team building and an awards banquet at the end of the season. In FFA, she was in competitions and received the Best Informed Green Hand as a freshman and In Opening and Closing Competition as a sophomore. In 4-H, she was Secretary for two years in a row and is currently the president.
In Rainbow, she is currently an Advisor (like President) and through this program she has learned public speaking, ritual work, poise, service to the community and her participation in this organization has helped in her confidence level. Breanne is a hard worker and starts her day at 5 a.m. where she and her sister feed the animals (19 rabbits, two horses, four dogs and three cats). After school she works on homework, attends various club meetings, helps around the family farm or shuttling younger siblings to their commitments.
Breanna received many exemplary student awards in Elementary School, and Outstanding Science Student in Junior High. She was nominated and subsequently able to attend a forum at Harvard the summer after her freshman year. The time was very intense for her but she and her mother had a great time meeting many interesting people and Nobel Prize winners. In 4-H, three of her photograph entries earned Best of Show, as well as, many first place ribbons for other photos. Her rabbits won Best of Breed and Best Opposite and her canning items won several first and second place ribbons.
Marnelle Salie, a senior at Oakdale High, is an active member and leader in the FFA program at Oakdale High School. Through the FFA she has contributed many hours of community service. Responsibilities come in different forms; she has good grades, leads by example as president of the Oakdale High School FFA Chapter and gives back to the community by giving her time.
Marnelle is the face of the Oakdale High School Officer Team. She represents the school and community at many public events and competitions throughout the region. She has a positive impact on the people around her. Marnelle’s leadership empowers other officers to allow them to step up. Marnelle is a student who has earned her way to the top without being a showboat. She puts other people and their needs before her own. Marnelle has been recognized for her judging (horse) team expertise.
Natalie Thompson is a student who puts others ahead of herself. Natalie is a part of the Oakdale High School FFA family. In addition to her commitment to this organization, she is also a part of the Hi-4H. Both of these organizations are community service driven. Natalie has given countless hours to help better the environment for others.
Natalie has been a straight A student the past three years, academically she is on target, but giving back to her community is just as important. Natalie is a fantastic student who deserves to be recognized for all her hard work in the community. The outcome of her generosity is over 264 hours of community service over the last year and a half.
Currently Natalie is a senior at OHS. She is an active member of the FFA, officer of the Orange Blossom Hi-4H, varsity water polo player and staff member of Camp Sylvester.
Marissa Raggio is a talented student who takes all pre-AP classes with two high school level classes. She is an active member of 4-H and the Oakdale Swim Team. She is also a member of California Junior Scholastic Federation Club at her school. She is a leader for her peers and strives to do her best.
Marissa is a very active and responsible individual. She is responsible for working cows on her family ranch, as well as, taking care of her 4-H cows, participates in swim practice daily throughout the year, homework for all her AP classes and participating in school and community clubs.
She is an outstanding role model for all seventh and eighth grade students at her school. Marissa will be graduating with honors and is on track for graduating with a 4.0 GPA.
Tickets for the Friday, Jan. 19 Chamber awards dinner are $40 each ($50 at the door) and are available at the Oakdale Chamber office, 590 N. Yosemite Ave., Oakdale. You can also purchase tickets online at www.oakdalechamber.com.