For immediate release from the Academic Distinction Fund
Contact person: Charlene Guarisco, Development Director (922-4560)
The Holiday Inn Select was “buzzing” with activity on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 as the Academic Distinction Fund (ADF) and School Aids hosted the third annual Executive Spelling Bee and Society of Excellence Breakfast.Over 150 people gathered for breakfast and the final round of competition of the middle and high school teams.Winning the Middle School competition was the team from GlasgowMiddle School, sponsored by Thibodeaux2 Designs.High School winners were one of the teams from NorthdaleAcademy, sponsored by Cortana Kiwanis.
On Monday, April 18, 16 middle school teams competed in the Preliminary Rounds at the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI) ConferenceCenter.Exxon/Mobil EXCITE! volunteers served dinner, provided by LABI.The two middle schools who earned a place in the final Championship Round, which was held at the Breakfast on Tuesday, April 26 were the teams of GlasgowMiddle School teamed with a representatives from their sponsor, Thibodeaux2 Designs and WestdaleMiddle School, teamed with representatives from their sponsor, Lagniappe Women’s Club.Neal Wu and Nicole Cook were the student spellers from Glasgow Middle and Jayne Thibodeaux was the speller from Thibodeaux2 Designs.Oanh Truong and Howard Tsai were Westdale Middle’s student spellers and Joan Butt and Brenda Baumgardner represented the Lagniappe Women’s Club on the team.
Tuesday, April 19 was the date for the high school preliminaries with 19 teams competing again at LABI.High School teams winning a spot in the finals were Northdale Academy-Team 1, teamed with representatives from their sponsor, the Baton Rouge Business Report and Northdale Academy-Team 2, teamed with representatives from their sponsor, Cortana Kiwanis.LaTonya Brown and Jarrett Davis were the student spellers from Northdale Academy-Team 1 and Marielle Land Howard and Jerry Martin were the spellers from the Baton Rouge Business Report.They competed against student speller Kevin Minor from Northdale Academy-Team 2 joined with spellers Debbie Griffin and Jeff Wittenbrink from Cortana Kiwanis.
ADF Board Vice Chair Willie Johnson welcomed everyone to the event.Rev. Marion Watts, Associate Pastor at UniversityMethodistChurch, delivered the invocation.Following breakfast, Executive Director, Jan Melton, introduced special guest, Mayor President Kip Holden, who said a few words, and then explained how the Preliminaries worked and the finalists were named.All participants from the Preliminaries who were in the audience were asked to stand and be recognized for their hard work.
Title Sponsor of the 2005 Executive Spelling Bee was once again School Aids.Corporate Sponsor, Kean Miller Law Firm, also awarded dictionaries to every student participating in the preliminaries from all 35 teams in addition to their financial contribution.Other In-Kind sponsors included the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI), who hosted the Preliminaries at their facility and underwrote the cost of the dinner each night.Other In-Kind Sponsors included All Star Automotive Group, Baton Rouge Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Baton Rouge Duplicating Products (BRDP), Citadel Broadcasting, ExxonMobil, and DAKTRONICS, INC.Special thanks to The Jambalaya Shoppe for their assistance with food for the Preliminaries and to Manda Fine Meats and the John R. White Company for the honey bears table favors..
A total of 30 teams from 25 schools participated in the Preliminaries.They were:
Arlington Prep, Baker Middle, Baton Rouge Magnet High School, Belaire High School, Broadmoor High School, Broadmoor Middle School, Capitol Pre-College Academy, Capitol Middle School, Crestworth Middle School, Glasgow Middle School, Glen Oaks Middle School, Istrouma High School, Kenilworth Middle School, Lee High School, McKinley High School (2 teams), Northdale Academy (3 teams), Northeast Elementary/6th Grade, Northeast High School, Park Forest Middle School, Prescott Middle School, Scotlandville High School, Sherwood Middle School, Tara High School, Westdale Middle School (2 teams), and Zachary High School.
A total of 46 businesses and non-profits participate as team members and/or
sponsors.They were: Adams & Reese, LLP, Baton Rouge Business Report,
Capitol City Rotary, Chenevert Architects, LLC, CJ Brown Realtors, Cortana Kiwanis, Daniel & Eustis, LLC/Big Buddy Program, Entergy, ExxonMobil, GMFS, The Graham Group/Teach For America, Hibernia, Jones Walker, LLP, (2 teams),
Kean Miller Law Firm, Kiwanis Club of the Oaks, Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI), Lagniappe Woman’s Club, Lagniappe Women’s Club, Lamar Advertising, Long Law Firm, Louisiana Education Loan Authority (LELA), Manda Fine Meats / Boys & Girls Club, Myles, Cook, & Day, Rafael Bermudez & Assoc. / Young Leaders Academy, Seale, Smith, Zuber & Barnette, Shadow Broadcast Services, Shell Chemical,SSA Consultants, Syngenta, Taylor, Porter, Brooks & Phillips, LLP, The Chamber of Greater Baton Rouge, Thibodeaux 2 Designs, Volunteer Baton Rouge!/VolunTEENS, and Wright & Percy Insurance.
Serving as the official Pronouncers for the Preliminaries and Final Championship Round were Mike Smith of Buerman, Miller, Fitzgerald and Bettsie Miller, Community Volunteer.Serving as Judges for the three events were Dr. Jaquator Hamer and Yvonne Campbell, both of Southern University and Rhett Morris, Executive Assistant to Mayor-President Kip Holden. The Official Timers of the competitions were Carol Marabella of the LSU Board of Regents, Sara Downing, President Elect of the Junior League of BR, and Dale Irvin of Flying Fish Creative Services.
A true highlight of the program was the Teacher Testimonials given by ADF Fellow and National Certification candidate Rose Kendrick, a math teacher at CapitolPre-CollegeAcademy.Rose spoke on her involvement with ADF’s programs and how they have made a difference in her life as a teacher.
After a tense few rounds and some tough words, the winners were declared. The winning word in the middle school division was cerebellar (misspelled by other team), and the championship word was pyrometallurgical.The winning word in the high school division was demesne (misspelled first by the other team), and the championship word was papillote.Each winning team received medals, a trophy, and a check for their school for $500, presented by Title Sponsor, Jamey Firnberg of School Aids.The runners up were presented with medals for their valiant effort.Guests left with a keepsake placemat featuring the programs of ADF and artwork done by elementary students from Ashley Bernstein’s Art Classes in the EBRPSS Gifted and Talented Program at the Baton RougeCenter for the Visual and Performing Arts and Buchanan Elementary.
Principal Brister in Washington, D.C., to Accept McKinley Middle School’s Second Blue Ribbon Award
On Tuesday, November 13, 2012, Principal Herman Brister (pictured, left) and the school’s Teacher of the Year, Lynn Williamson (right), were in Washington, D.C., accepting McKinley Middle Academic Magnet School’s National Blue Ribbon Award from U.S. Department of Education’s Director of National Blue Ribbon Schools Program Aba Kumi (center). The event, which recognized some 314 schools from across the United States, was held at the Omni Hotel. Click herefor story.
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