Rotary South Recognizes Scholar-Athletes

Posted on May 15, 2014

Rotary South Recognizes Scholar-Athletes

scholarathletes2014bRotary Club of Fort Myers South honored outstanding area high school seniors at the 28th Annual Scholar-Athlete Awards Banquet May 14, 2014 at the Crowne Plaza in Fort Myers with over 200 community leaders, students, parents and mentors in attndance. Eighteen Lee County-area high schools nominated one top male and female varsity letter winner who maintained a minimum 3.2 GPA, was involved in school and community activities and demonstrated leadership characteristics.

The 36 nominees were: Annette Castaldo and Richard Doyle from Bishop Verot Catholic High School, Kathryn Flaharty and Alex Rabinowitz from Canterbury School, Matthew Aaron Hale and Melanie Lugo from Cape Coral High School, Samantha Damico and Jake Kilgore from Cypress Lake High School, Juan M. Benitez and Ireysha Morrison from Dunbar High School, Daniel Alvarez and Cynthia Auplant from East Lee County High School, Wesley J. Pruitt and Katie Slater from Estero High School, Sean Mazzola and Haley Pigott from Evangelical Christian School, Emily Edwards and Logan B. Samuelson from Fort Myers High School, Kelsey E. Anders and Nicholas Dunkelly-Allen from Gateway Charter School, Rebecca E. Cicoria and Trayvon Clarke from Ida S. Baker High School, Sean Gavitt and Morgan Cathleen Whitman from Island Coast High School, Bernard Edwards and Krysten Topliff from Lehigh Senior High School, Katsiaryna Khatskevich and Jomar Andres Restrepo from Mariner High School, Connor E. Black and Abigail Larson from North Fort Myers High School, Austin Tindle and Chenelle L. Walker from Riverdale High School, McKenzie Makar and Kyle E. Palmer from South Fort Myers High School, and Alexandra Hamilton and Whitman Bertram Wiggins from Southwest Florida Christian Academy.

A selection committee of Rotary South members interviewed nominees and selected the top winners, who will each receive a $5,000 scholarship underwritten by The SWFL Rheem Team. The 2014 male and female Scholar Athletes of the Year were:

  • Logan Samuelson, Fort Myers High School
  • Emily Edwards, Fort Myers High School (tie)
  • Chenelle Walker, Riverdale High School (tie)

This is the tenth year the Rheem Team – a philanthropic group of HVAC professionals – has served as a major sponsor of the event, and the fourth year it has served as the overall Scholarship Sponsor. In addition to sponsoring the scholarships, the Rheem Team hosts an online People’s Choice Scholar-Athlete Award, where visitors to can vote for their favorite student, who then has a chance to win an iPad.

In addition, Rotary South and other sponsors presented “Service Above Self” $1,000 scholarships to:

  • Ireysha Morrison, Dunbar High School
  • Cynthia Auplant, East Lee County High School
  • Wesley Pruitt, Estero High School
  • Morgan Whitman, Island Coast High School
  • Juan Benitez, Dunbar High School
  • Abigail Larson, North Fort Myers High School
  • Jomar Andres Restreppo, Mariner High School
  • Annette Castaldo, Bishop Verot High School
  • Matthew Hale, Cape Coral High School
  • McKenzie Makar, South Fort Myers High School
  • Kyle Palmer, South Fort Myers High School
  • Nicholas Dunkelly-Allen, Gateway Charter High School
  • Trayvon Clarke, Ida S. Baker High School
  • Daniel Alvarez, East Lee County High School

Rotary South Scholar-Athlete Awards Chairman Rob Scharlau said, “Rotary South is pleased to once again have a part in recognizing our Scholar-Athletes. These young men and women do an excellent job of representing their schools and Southwest Florida. Each and every one has a bright future ahead.”

Lesley Bush was the keynote speaker at the banquet. The Olympic gold medalist and International Swimming Hall of Fame inductee later went on to become a middle and high school science teacher, and presented an inspirational address to all attendees.