U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski (back row, right), D-3rd, poses with winners at his annual All-American Boy and Girl Award Ceremony for seventh- and eighth-graders at the Sabre Room in Hickory Hills. | Supplied photo
Updated: April 17, 2014 6:08AM
U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski, D-3rd, recently held his annual All-American Boy and Girl Award Ceremony for seventh- and eighth-grade students at the Sabre Room in Hickory Hills.
One hundred finalists were selected from more than 1,000 applicants to appear before a panel of judges for a formal interview. After the interviews, 12 winners were selected — three boys and three girls from each grade.
Seventh-grade boys: Austin Monaco, Santa Lucia; Christopher Neary, St. Cajetan; Sabastian Alander Sawicki, Simmons Middle School.
Seventh-grade girls: Ariana Ascencio, St. Rene; Sadie Reese, St. Cajetan; Kayla Grover, Liberty Junior High.
Eighth-grade boys: Nikolas Anaya, Bridgeport Catholic Academy; Frank Gomilka, SS. Cyril & Methodius; Jeffrey Vitek, McClure Junior High.
Eighth-grade girls: Hannah Heppner, St. Christina; Elizabeth Stehlik, St. Daniel The Prophet; Patricia Ann Tichy, Clissold Elementary.
“There’s a lot of attention these days on a few young people that make bad decisions,” Lipinski said in a press release about the event. “I look forward to this longstanding program every year because it gives me the opportunity to highlight a group of well-rounded young men and women that the entire district can be proud of. Looking at these individuals — and the strong network of family, friends and teachers that surrounds them — I know they will make great contributions to their communities and our country.”
Lipinski congratulated all of the finalists and urged them to continue working hard and focus on ways they can be of service to others.
All finalists was awarded certificates for their hard work and superior essays. The 12 winners were awarded special plaques and other prizes.