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Students, Leaders Recognized at Scholarship and Athena Awards Luncheon

At Michael's Restaurant, the community gathered to honor eight local students and two city leaders.

A student who's created an anti-bullying campaign at Foothill College, a marketing and professional networking expert and an elected official received public recognition for their contributions to Mountain View and its surroundings today.

The held its 21st Annual Athena Awards and SOAR Scholarship luncheon at on Tuesday, Mar. 20. Councilwoman Laura Macias received an Athena Award and Carolyn Hopkins-Vasquez, director of marketing at , received the Athena Young Professional award.

The Athena Awards are given to women who demonstrate excellence in their professional fields and also have impacted their community positively.

"Leadership is not about someone who talks the loudest, the longest or stands on the highest ground," said Macias, who moved to Mountain View in 1989, graduated from in 1994, served as Board Member of and as City Council member since 2004. "It's about being on the path and leading means to be a guide. Together we find our way."

Hopkins-Vasquez, introduced by her sister and last year's "young Athena" winner Alison Hopkins, wanted to use her few minutes on the microphone to give advise to the scholarship recipients.

"Have a good time, be yourself and don't let anyone tell you different," she said after she explained that it took her 6.5 years to finish undergrad while working two jobs.

Six of the eight local student were presented with $1,500 checks and on tuition is how they planned to spend the money.

"I'm grateful and learning that I was one of 45 people nominated to win this makes me feel great," said Nova Rivera, an 18-year-old student, who hopes to study at Loyola Marymount and major in political science. "Basically all of this money will be for tuition and books."

Equally as happy was Kelli Lee, a 21-year-old at . Lee is active in the disabled community and on campus anti-bullying campaigns.

"I'm just so happy," Lee said. Lee hopes to transfer to either San Jose State or San Francisco State and pursue studies in business administration.

The other students to receive scholarships were Mountain View resident and Los Altos High student Salvador Chávez, Mountain View resident and Bellarime College Prep student Enzo Delacroche, Mountain View resident and Foothill College student Edna Hernández, Mountain View resident and Foothill College student Angelica Mantilla, Mountain View high student Bryan Medina and Los Altos resident and Los Altos High student Olivia Santiago.

Ellen Wheeler March 21, 2012 at 03:37 PM
Congratulations to all! This was a great, feel-good event yesterday.
Alison Hopkins March 21, 2012 at 06:05 PM
Wonderful event! I am so pround of my sissy Carolyn!

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