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53rd annual Hewitt Awards to be presented Sunday, May 6

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Thu, Apr 26th 2018 11:20 am
Eighteen student scholar-athletes representing nine area high schools will be honored at the 53rd annual Thomas E. Hewitt Sports Awards Dinner at 6 p.m. Sunday, May 6, at Antonio's Banquet Center, 7708 Niagara Falls Blvd., Niagara Falls. The dinner, sponsored by the board of associates of Mount St. Mary's Hospital, will begin with a reception at 5 p.m.
The guest speaker will be David Clawson, head football coach at Wake Forest University. Clawson is a graduate of Lewiston-Porter High School and a 1985 winner of the Hewitt Award.
Board President Robert Ingrasci of Lumsden McCormick LLP, Certified Public Accountants, is chairman of the event. Tickets are available by calling 716-298-2146.
The dinner, named for the late city editor of the Niagara Gazette, will include the presentation of $2,500 scholarships to the top male and female candidates as determined by a panel of judges. In addition, each student will receive a $200 award for their nomination.
The panel of judges includes: Alan Elia, CEO of Sevenson Environmental; Julie Berrigan, executive director of the Mount St. Mary's Hospital Foundation; and Steve Butler, deputy director of athletics at Niagara University. Judging is based on scholastic achievement, athletic achievement, school and community involvement, and a personal interview with the judges.
The nine female nominees and their high schools include: Jenette DiLaura of Grand Island, Emma Waechter of Lewiston-Porter, Julia LaRose of Lockport, Nina Ligammari of Niagara Catholic, Natalia Suska of Niagara Falls, Callista Zayatz of Niagara-Wheatfield, Lindsay Piotrowski of North Tonawanda, Jenna Cappellino of Starpoint, and Medeline Mocarski of Wilson.
The nine male nominees and their high schools include: John Griffin of Grand Island, Brendan Perreault of Lewiston-Porter, Brennan Bailey of Lockport, Michael Sanders Jr., of Niagara Catholic, Patrick Singleton of Niagara Falls, Thomas Efthemis of Niagara-Wheatfield, Jordan Holmes of North Tonawanda, Campbell Schoenfeld of Starpoint, and Nathaniel Johnson of Wilson.
FEMALE NOMINEES
Jenette DiLaura of Grand Island High School is the daughter of Kathleen and John DiLaura. Jenette earned a 97.74 weighted average. She is a member of the National Honor Society, was named a Grand Island Scholar Athlete for four years, was named a Section VI All-WNY Scholar Athlete, and earned a Bausch & Lomb Honorary Science Award. In her school and community, Jenette is a member of the string orchestra, first violin in the All-County Solo Festival, member of the Chamber Orchestra, an honors chemistry volunteer and volunteer with Ronald McDonald House, Deerhurst Church and St. Vincent de Paul Society. In athletics, she was captain of the varsity cross country team where she was NFL All-League, 2nd Team; captain of the varsity indoor track team and member of the sectional team, where she was the No. 1 3,000 runner; and captain of the varsity outdoor track team. Jenette plans to attend college and has applied to several schools. She will study chemical engineering.
Emma Waechter of Lewiston-Porter High School is the daughter of Sarah and Scott Waechter. She earned a 102.86 weighted average. Emma is vice president of the National Honor Society, member of the Spanish honor society and member of the science honor society. She has earned high honors all marking periods, was named an All-WNY Scholar Athlete and earned second place at the 2015 International Student Science Fair in Australia. In her school and community, she is an officer on the student council, member of the Traditions Club, secretary of the concert band and member of the jazz band, member of the student athletic advisory committee, member of the Key Club and volunteer with the Salvation Army and Kiwanis Club. In athletics, she was co-captain of the varsity swimming team, co-captain of the varsity softball team and member of the varsity bowling team. She plans to attend college and major in chemical engineering. Her goal is to become a chemical engineer and work with renewable energy.
Julia LaRose of Lockport High School is the daughter of Kristine and Michael LaRose. Julia has earned a 101.65 weighted average. She is treasurer of the National Honor Society, and member of the math honor society, science honor society and social studies honor society. She has earned an Academic "L" Award and underclassman awards for high achievement in biology, English, chemistry, physics, U.S. history and art. In her school and community, she is co-president of the senior class, editor-in-chief of the yearbook staff, treasurer of the principal's advisory cabinet, volunteer with Unyts, member of the Wilderness Club and Interact Club, and participant in Leadership for the Youth of Niagara. In athletics, she was captain of the varsity diving team, where she was 2017 league champion, a league record holder, sectional champion and state qualifier. She was co-captain of the varsity cheerleading team; performed at the Camping World 2018 College Football Bowl Game and co-captain of the varsity track team. She also competed in the 2015 New Balance Nationals Meet. Julia plans to attend college and pursue a degree in secondary education as a high school math teacher while being involved in coaching athletics.
Nina Ligammari of Niagara Catholic High School is the daughter of Jennifer and Nicholas Ligammari, III. Nina has earned a 91.84 four-year average. She is vice president of the National Honor Society, earned high honors for four years, is in the Top 10 academic average in her class, and has earned the Lions Club Award. In her school and community, she is secretary of the student council, member of the Unyts Donate Life Club and a volunteer with Hyde Park baseball. In athletics, she is a member of the varsity volleyball team and member of the varsity softball team. Nina plans to attend Daemen College and major in nursing. Her goal is to pursue a master's degree and become a nurse practitioner.
Natalia Suska of Niagara Falls High School is the daughter of Miroslawa and Jacek Suska. She has earned a 98.51 non-weighted average. Natalia earned a Clarkson University School Scholar's Award, is an officer of the National Honor Society, earned the NFHS Award of Honor (three years), earned NFHS mathematics recognition (three years) and was named an AP Scholar with honors recognition and was a finalist for Questbridge. In her school and the community, she is treasurer of the Key Club, president of the science club, was selected for Leadership Youth of Niagara, volunteer with the school theater (backstage crew), member of the ski club, anchor on "High School Live" TV show, and staff sergeant in the Civil Air Patrol. In athletics, she was co-captain of the varsity indoor track team, co-captain of the varsity outdoor track team, member of the varsity cross country team and member of the Niagara Falls track club. Natalia plans to attend either the Honors College at SUNY Buffalo or an Ivy League School, and major in either chemistry or chemical engineering. Her goal is to earn her Ph.D. in engineering, law or the pharmaceutical sciences.
Callista Zayatz of Niagara-Wheatfield High School is the daughter of Theresa and Corey Zayatz. Callista has earned a 101.37 weighted average. She is her class valedictorian, member of the National Honor Society, has earned high honors, was named a Niagara-Wheatfield Scholar Athlete, earned Niagara-Wheatfield academic honors and was a participant in the chemistry Olympiad. In her school and community, she is a member of the outdoor club, volunteer at the North Tonawanda Library, volunteer at the American Legion raffle, a volunteer Spanish tutor and a volunteer at First Trinity Lutheran Vacation Bible School. In athletics, she was co-captain of the varsity volleyball team, member of the varsity basketball team (where she was selected as an ADPRO Sports/Section VI Scholar-Athlete All-WNY Girls Basketball team member, 2017-18) and co-captain of the varsity track and field team. She earned 10 varsity letters and was a Niagara PAL Female Prep Athlete of the Year nominee. Callista plans to attend SUNY Buffalo, major in biochemistry, and then apply to medical school. Her goal is to become a physician specializing in pediatrics.
Lindsay Piotrowski of North Tonawanda High School is the daughter of Karen and Daryle Piotrowski. Lindsay has earned a 93.40 weighted average. She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society, was named a North Tonawanda Scholar Athlete and was named a Student of the Month. In her school and community, she is a member of the animal club, member of the recycling club, volunteer with the Buffalo Humane Society and volunteer at Buffalo Full Court Hoops Camp. In athletics, she was captain of the varsity basketball team and captain of the varsity volleyball team. Lindsay plans to attend Niagara County Community College. She will study psychology and then transfer to a college to pursue studies in a career that will help others.
Jenna Cappellino of Starpoint High School is the daughter of Joelle and Joe Cappellino. Jenna has earned a 98.19 weighted average. She is a member of the National Honor Society, math honor society, science honor society, social studies honor society and English honor society. She has earned a Clarkson University Leadership Award, earned the Superintendent Scholar Award (three times), was named a scholar athlete and earned an outstanding achievement award in geometry, English and French. In her school and community, she is a member of the yearbook staff, member of the school band, participant in the Ride for Roswell, volunteer at her church and local senior center, president of the Donate Life Club and a volunteer with the Lock In to Lock Out Cancer event. In athletics, she was a member of the varsity swimming team and member of the varsity softball team. Jenna plans to attend either SUNY Buffalo or the Rochester Institute of Technology and major in environmental engineering. Her goal is to become an environmental engineer.
Medeline Mocarski of Wilson High School is the daughter of Leslie and Thomas Mocarski. Madeline has earned a 100.09 weighted average. She is a member of the National Honor Society, is the class salutatorian, earned high honor roll, was named a Wilson Scholar Athlete and named an All-WNY Scholar Athlete two times. In her school and community, she is secretary of the senior class, chairman of the homecoming committee, volunteer with Kids Escaping Drugs, and member of the Captain's Club. In athletics, she was captain of the varsity field hockey team, captain of the varsity basketball team and captain of the varsity softball team. Madeline plans to attend college at SUNY Buffalo and major in pharmacy. Her goal is to become a pharmacist.
MALE NOMINEES
John Griffin of Grand Island High School is the son of Susan and John Griffin. John earned a 96.86 weighted average. He is a member of the National Honor Society, earned academic honors awards for three years, and earned a Wells College Academic Scholarship. In his school and community, John is treasurer of the senior class and a member of the student council. In athletics, he was co-captain of the varsity soccer team, where he was named first team All-WNY and member of the varsity tennis team. John's goal is to attend Xavier University and he has also applied to several schools for a major in business marketing. He plans to pursue a master's degree and work in marketing.
Brendan Perreault of Lewiston-Porter High School is the son of Julie and David Perreault. Brendan has earned a 99.10 weighted average. He is a member of the National Honor Society, vice president of the Spanish honor society and member of the science honor society. He has earned high honors all marking periods, was named to the All-WNY Academic Football Team, named a scholar athlete for four years, and earned a New York State Comptroller Award. In his school and community, he is an officer in the concert band, member of the student athletic advisory committee, member of DECA, member of the varsity club, volunteer with Niagara Hospice, a volunteer reading tutor to elementary students and a volunteer referee for youth sports. In athletics, he was captain of the varsity football team, captain of the varsity baseball team, and member of the varsity basketball team. Brendan plans to attend college and has applied to several schools. He will major in biology with a pre-medicine track. His goal is to become a physician.
Brennan Bailey of Lockport High School is the son of Donna and Doug Bailey. Brennan has earned a 98.50 weighted average. He is a member of the National Honor Society, social studies honor society, math honor society and science honor society. He has earned academic achievement awards in biology, French and English along with an academic varsity letter. In his school and community, Brennan is a volunteer with Unyts, member of the Forum/yearbook staff, member of the wilderness club, volunteer with the Lockport Canned Food Drive, and member of the French club. In athletics, he was captain of the varsity hockey team (and named a Section VI Scholar Athlete), captain of the varsity golf team and captain of the varsity lacrosse team. He plans to attend either Nazareth College or Daemen College and major in physical therapy. His goal is to earn his doctorate and become a physical therapist.
Michael Sanders Jr. of Niagara Catholic High School is the son of Lisa and Michael Sanders Sr. He has earned a 91.80 weighted average. Michael is a member of the National Honor Society, earned high honors and has earned a President's Award. In his school and community, he is president of the senior class, president of the Niagara Catholic student body, male lead in the drama club production, member of the concert band (violin), member of the concert chorale and chamber band, member of the book club and ski club, and a participant in Leadership for the Youth of Niagara. In athletics, he was co-captain of the varsity soccer team and member of the varsity basketball team. Michael plans to attend the Rochester Institute of Technology and major in electrical engineering. His goal is to continue education in mechanical and aerospace engineering with a goal of being involved in space exploration.
Patrick Singleton of Niagara Falls High School is the son of Marietta Singleton. He has earned a 97.95 non-weighted average. Patrick is a member of the National Honor Society, was named a NFHS Scholar Athlete, earned a Clarkson University Achievement Award, and was a 2017 New York State Boy's State delegate. In his school and community, he is a member of Reality Check, member of the musical pit ensemble, section leader of the marching band and member of the pep band. He is a volunteer with the Office of the Aging, was selected for Leadership Youth of Niagara, a volunteer at Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center and member of the book club. In athletics, he was captain of the varsity cross-country team, captain of the varsity indoor track team, and member of the varsity outdoor track team. Patrick plans to attend SUNY Buffalo, Cornell University or the University of Chicago and major in mathematics and/or chemical engineering. His goal is to become a mathematician and educator.
Thomas Efthemis of Niagara-Wheatfield High School is the son of Christine and Robert Efthemis. He has earned a 99.34 weighted average. Thomas is a member of the National Honor Society, was named a Niagara-Wheatfield Scholar Athlete and has earned a Clarkson Leadership Award. In his school and community, he is a member of the All-State Band, All-County Band, symphonic band and pit band. He is a volunteer with Skate with SABAH, volunteer with Treats for Troops and a volunteer with the church book drive. In athletics, he was captain of the varsity soccer team, member of the varsity hockey team and captain of the varsity track and field team. Thomas plans to attend SUNY Buffalo and pursue a degree in electrical engineering. His goal is to earn a master's degree.
Jordan Holmes of North Tonawanda High School is the son of Jackie and Tim Holmes. Jordan has earned a 95.58 weighted average. He is a member of the National Honor Society, earned Scholar Athlete awards in football and wrestling, and is an Eagle Scout. In his school and community, he is a volunteer at Northgate Healthcare and with the Erie Canal cleanup. In athletics, Jordan was captain of the varsity football team where he was named All-League Second Team and All-WNY Third Team. Jordan plans to attend SUNY Albany and major in biology and neurosciences with a goal of becoming a neurosurgeon.
Campbell Schoenfeld of Starpoint High School is the son of Patti and Ryan Schoenfeld. Campbell has earned a 97.94 weighted average. He is a member of the National Honor Society, National Science Honor Society and National Math Honor Society. He has been named a New York State Scholar Athlete, earned a Superintendent's Student of the Month Award and a Wells College 21st Century Leadership Award. In his school and community, he is a member of the Link Crew cabinet, member of the art club, member of the youth activation committee, volunteer with the Lions Club and member of the Locked-In to Lock-Out Cancer Committee. In athletics, he was captain of the varsity volleyball team where he was named the Niagara Gazette Boys Volleyball Player of the Year and a member of the varsity tennis team. Campbell plans to attend Harvard University and play Division I volleyball. He will be studying chemistry and/or art. His goal is to pursue a career in education or research.
Nathaniel Johnson of Wilson High School is the son of Mary and Daniel Johnson. Nathaniel has earned a 98.20 weighted average. He is president of the National Honor Society, was named an All-WNY Scholar Athlete, ranked No. 8 in his senior class, earned high honors (four consecutive years), earned 37 SUNY college credits, had perfect attendance (third grade through present), and was named a Wilson Champion. In his school and community, he was vice president of the senior class, member of the men's choir, show choir, a-capella choir, and participated in school musicals. He was emcee of the variety show, member of the Captain's Club, and a volunteer at numerous community events/activities, including those at Wilson Firehall, Wilson Lions Club and Old Fort Niagara. In athletics, he was captain of the varsity cross country team (where he was named MVP and earned a Coaches Award) was captain of the varsity track team, earned 11 varsity letters and was named All-League Second team and Honorable Mention. Nathaniel plans to attend SUNY Geneseo and major in biology and advance to the pre-med program.

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