Austin American Legion, Auxiliary present American awards to students

The annual Americanism awards were given out at the American Legion on April 24. Pictured, from left, are: Americanism program chairman Steve Krob, American Legion Post 90 Commander Kirk Olsen, Boys State member Ezekiel Peters of Austin High School, Girls State member Vanessa Garcia of AHS, Girls State member Natalie Perry of AHS, Girls State member Christina Hernandez of AHS, Americanism award recipient Braden Kocer of Pacelli Catholic Schools, Americanism award recipient Nathaniel Conner of AHS, Auxiliary 91 President Lola Hanson and Girls State chairwoman Annette Quinlan. Photo provided

The annual Americanism awards were given out at the American Legion on April 24. Pictured, from left, are: Americanism program chairman Steve Krob, American Legion Post 90 Commander Kirk Olsen, Boys State member Ezekiel Peters of Austin High School, Girls State member Vanessa Garcia of AHS, Girls State member Natalie Perry of AHS, Girls State member Christina Hernandez of AHS, Americanism award recipient Braden Kocer of Pacelli Catholic Schools, Americanism award recipient Nathaniel Conner of AHS, Auxiliary 91 President Lola Hanson and Girls State chairwoman Annette Quinlan. Photo provided

The American Legion and Auxiliary presented Americanism awards on April 24.

First District Commander Roland Hanson and Austin Post 91 Commander Kirk Olsen welcomed the recipients and their families. Americanism program chairman Steve Krob presented the Boys State awards to Austin High School junior Ezekiel Peters and Pacelli Catholic Schools junior Cole Ethen.

Girls State chairwoman Annette Quinlan presented awards to Vanessa Garcia, Christina Hernandez and Natalie Perry, all from AHS.

Commander Kirk Olsen and Auxiliary 91 President Lola Hanson presented Americanism awards to AHS’s Nathaniel Conner and Yamen Opiew, along with Pacelli’s Braden Kocer and Sarah Holtz.

Boys and Girls State representatives are chosen with these criteria in mind: junior class member in the upper 50 percent of the class, is a lead, enthusiastic, has a good personality and character, gets along with others, is interested in a citizenship program, and demonstrates quality work in the classroom and the community.

These representatives attend a week-long program in June. Girls State is held at Bethel University, and Boys State is at Southwest State University. Students operate local, county and state government. Participants are exposed to the responsibilities of American citizens.

The qualities for choosing the Americanism recipients are courage, honor, leadership, patriotism, scholarship and service. These qualities are inscribed on the medallions the students received. This is the highest honor awarded to youth by the American Legion.

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