Sixty-six Oxford youths honored for their commitment to the community

By Jim Newell
Managing Editor
OXFORD TWP. — The Oxford-Addison Youth Assistance board members, local leaders and first responders honored 66 area youths during the annual Youth Awards ceremony at Seymour Lake Township Park on Friday.
The OAYA Youth Awards celebrate the achievements of exceptional students who were nominated for their selfless acts in the Oxford, Addison and Leonard communities. These students were recognized for their contributions to making their community a better place and for their charitable work in Michigan.
Whether they were described as outgoing leaders among their peers or led by quiet example, the youths who were recognized all shared several traits: they are caring, sweet, principled leaders who tackled obstacles and exhibited a positive attitude and positive influence on those around them.
Oxford Police Chief Mike Solwold is on the OAYA board and was co-chair of the Youth Awards committee.
“We always see the bad before we see the good. We need to recognize the good and let our kids know that when they do a good deed they need a pat on the back for that because you want that to continue,” Solwold said. “We’ve got a lot of good kids in this community.
Nominations for the OAYA Youth Awards were received from schools, community organizations, civic leaders and members of the faith community. Each nominee received certificates from OAYA and local dignitaries, as well as a goodie bag filled with gift certificates from various businesses in the community.
Solwold said he was impressed with the number of nominations, what the people who nominated the youths wrote about each one and how much they have helped in their school or in the community.
“We almost doubled the number of kids we had last year, which is fantastic,” Solwold said. “I know there are a lot of unsung heroes out there, kids in our community who may not have been mentioned. But we know they’re out there, we know who they are. And we just ask them to keep up the good work because you are going to grow up and be a part of this community and be leaders in this community.
The event was filled with fun, family activities, food and desserts before the ceremony began. Representatives from the Oxford Police Department, Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, Oxford Fire Department, Oxford Township government, Youth Assistance and Oakland County government were on hand to congratulate the students on their awards.
“It’s also a testament to the parents as well. The parents are doing a great job bringing these kids up,” Solwold added.
Awards were given for community involvement, being a student leader and personal achievement.
The students recognized are:
L.O.F.T. students Cameron Anderson, Darian Graves, Justin Larson, Cameron Long, Paige Mapes, Emily Osorio, Dariana Poole, Seth Rathburg, Eric Ridenour, Sarah Sewell and Khrystina Whitehouse for supporting Oxford Open Handed.
Jenna Miller, Christian Poosch, Jeremy Schwarb, Sierra Shea and Reagan Wolf for the Oxford Fire Department’s community CPR program.
Alice Nicosia, Hazel Nicosia, Heidi Allen, Brooklyn Biehl, Ena Brannan, Ava Brewer, Andrew Burgess, Emily Cantu, Clayton Cavanaugh, Audrey Clark, Marleigh Deneweth, Seth Devitt, Emelyn Durst, Sumayah El-Ganainy, Ezra Gaiter, Jonathan Dean Glashauser, Trey Greenfield, Eliyott Greenlaw, Brynley Guest, Grace Holley, Adanya Johnson, Lucas Johnstone, Penelope Kay, Katelyn Konkel, Ava Lane, Elijah Marialke, Caia McKahan, Logan Neiman, Brody Olds, Allizon Olivio-Javier, Benjamin Olkowski, Vinny Orlando, Francisco Pinchback, Henley Pitchford, Eli Poules, Augustus (Gus) Rheaume, Leah Robertson, Addilyn Schaenzle, Julianne Schwarz, Sloane Stevens, Brooklynn Stokes, Levi Trammel, Emery Ulin, Barrett Ward, William Ward, Johnnie Wilson Jr., Ashlynn Yarbrough.

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