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The Royster Division held its annual awards ceremony virtually on May 20, with the awards presentations mixed in with musical performances by students.

Headmaster Dennis Manning opened with his expressions of gratitude for the faculty, led by the administrative team of Interim Middle School Director Tommy Hudgins and Assistant Directors Trish Hopkins and Witt Borum.

After noting the achievements of the Middle School faculty and students throughout this unusual year, Mr. Hudgins began announcing awards:

High Honor Report, First Semester: 

  • Lizzie Adams 
  • Joe Bakkar 
  • Sarah Bazil 
  • Brooke Bettencourt 
  • Shelby Beverly 
  • Sam Bibeau 
  • Rachael Buchanan 
  • Julian Burke 
  • Kaiya Burnell-Grant 
  • Jack Clayton 
  • Oliver Coleman 
  • Jack Copeland 
  • Van Deans 
  • Bree Faulkner 
  • Katie Fernandez 
  • Ann Gray Golpira 
  • Srivi Hathwar 
  • Kate Jarvis 
  • Zoë Jones 
  • Madison Kay 
  • Isabella Leon 
  • Sarah Morolari 
  • Chloe Pausch 
  • Sophie Pollio 
  • Gretchen Scott 
  • Marin Soderberg 
  • Lily Stockwell 
  • Hannah Stredler 
  • Sam Stromberg 
  • Areen Syed 
  • Natalie Tajan 
  • Brice Yuill 

Honor Report, First Semester:

  • Kirsten Ackerman 
  • Lee Acra 
  • Conner Alex 
  • Rebecca Auerbach 
  • Lucy Avery 
  • Reagan Bandy 
  • Jeremiah Biggs 
  • Carey Boone 
  • Matthew Camardella 
  • Jack Chesson 
  • Carrie Collenberg 
  • Whitney Collenberg 
  • Layla Compton 
  • Will Crouch 
  • Yasmin Danso 
  • Dylan Defoor 
  • Ryan Evans 
  • Ethan Eveleigh 
  • Mills Everett 
  • Jacob Ezieme 
  • Lauren Freeman 
  • Ann Randolph Furr 
  • Cate Gusentine 
  • Zachary Harbison 
  • Charles Hope 
  • Richard Hope 
  • Cole Houfek 
  • Sydney Joynt 
  • Rhea Khanna 
  • Toye Lawani 
  • Parker Lesley 
  • Nate Levin 
  • Carter Lucas 
  • Emerson Marling 
  • Amber Morgan 
  • Holden Nelson 
  • Reece Newman 
  • Berkeley Newman 
  • Mack Panko 
  • Ava Salemi 
  • Varish Sappati 
  • Sam Shumadine 
  • Logan Simon 
  • Lance Snyder 
  • Reagan Szakaly 
  • Sam Tignor 
  • Cooper Tyszko 
  • Hunter Wheary 
  • Carter Whetstine 
  • Owen Yeung 

Royster Honor Council 2020-21 Members: Van Deans; Plyler Hunter; Lily Stockwell, Chairman; Olivia Crocker '25; Xander Dukas '25; Tessa Chavez '26; Nethan Liyanage '26.

Royster Student Council 2020-21 Executive Board: President Joseph Bakkar; Vice President Richard Hope; Secretary Toye Lawani; Treasurer Lee Acra; Ninth Grade Representatives Kaiya Burnell-Grant and Logan Simon; Eighth Grade Representatives Charlie Dailey and Brooke DiGeronimo; Seventh Grade Representatives Lane Britt and Sydney Petersen.

Peer Counselors for 2021-22: Carey Boone; Jack Clayton; Jack Copeland; Yasmin Danso; Madison Kay; Rhea Khanna; Brice Yuill.

Elie Wiesel Writing & Visual Arts Competition: 

  • Bree Faulkner earned First Place in the Senior Essay category with her entry, Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Trailblazer for All
  • Areen Syed earned First Place in a highly competitive Senior Poetry category with her entry, Why? 
  • Will Crouch, Sophie Pollio, and Lily Stockwell were finalists in the Senior Essay category
  • Conner Alex, Rachael Buchanan, and Natalie Tajan were finalists in the Senior Poetry category.   

Test of Engineering Aptitude, Mathematics and Science (TEAMS): 

  • Ninth Grade Third Place – Julian Burke, Ryan Evans, Ann Gray Golpira, Rhea Khanna 
  • Ninth Grade Seventh Place – Sam Bibeau, Bree Faulkner, Gretchen Scott, Marin Soderberg 
  • Ninth Grade Ninth Place – Srivi Hathwar, Zoë Jones, Varish Sappati, Areen Syed 

Renaissance Reader Awards: Lee Acra; Rebecca Auerbach; Lucy Baughman; Shelby Beverly; Rachael Buchanan; Julian Burke; Kaiya Burnell-Grant; Carrie Collenberg; Ryan Evans; Mills Everett; Jacob Ezieme; Bree Faulkner; Svirarun Hathwar; Charles Hope; Richard Hope; Zoë Jones; Sydney Joynt; Rhea Khanna; Toye Lawani; Isabella Leon; Emerson Marling; Reece Newman; Mack Panko; Gretchen Scott; Sam Shumadine; Marin Soderberg; Lily Stockwell; Areen Syed; Owen Yeung; Brice Yuill. (To achieve a Renaissance Reader Award, a student must read, in addition to required classroom reading, a minimum of five works from a list submitted by teachers from the Lower, Middle, and Upper Schools. The student, in a discussion with the sponsoring faculty member, must demonstrate a satisfactory understanding of each work.)

Batten Reader Awards: Given to the ninth-grade students who have read the most books from the Batten Library collection in the 2020-21 school year. Gretchen Scott (38 books) and Mack Panko (38 books).

National Latin Exam: 

  • Latin III Intermediate Reading Comprehension Exam Gold Medal Summa Cum Laude: Rachael Buchanan; Van Deans; Ann Gray Golpira; Srivi Hathwar; Zoë Jones; Gretchen Scott; Areen Syed.
  • Silver Medal Maxima Cum Laude: Lizzie Adams; Brooke Bettencourt; Zachary Harbison; Sophie Pollio.
  • Magna Cum Laude: Ryan Evans; Jacob Ezieme; Bree Faulkner; Marin Soderberg; Lily Stockwell; Reagan Szakaly; Natalie Tajan.
  • Cum Laude: Julian Burke; Owen Yeung.

Royster Ninth Grade Speech Award:

  • Winner: Lily Stockwell.
  • Finalists: Lizzie Adams; Ann Gray Golpira; Lily Stockwell.
  • Distinguished Speakers: Sam Bibeau; Kaiya Burnell-Grant; Yasmin Danso; Katie Fernandez; Srivi Hathwar; Zoë Jones; Sydney Joynt; Madison Kay; Holden Nelson; Mack Panko; Gretchen Scott; Natalie Tajan.

LTC Michael L. Horstman, USA (Ret.) History Award: Brooke Bettencourt. (Awarded annually by the Royster History Department in honor of LTC Mike Horstman, USA (Ret.), history teacher at Norfolk Academy until his retirement in 2016, to the outstanding student in the study of History.)

Spanish Language Award: Marin Soderberg. (Awarded to the student in Spanish I who has demonstrated the greatest interest and achievement during the first year of study.)

French I Award: Gretchen Scott. (An award for excellence in both the oral and written language and for leadership and enthusiasm in class.)

German Award: Sophie Pollio. (Presented by the Norfolk Academy German Club in memory of Maria Luebken, an exchange student from Copernicus Gymnasium Löningen in 1976, for outstanding achievement in German.)

Science Award: Jack Copeland. (Given to the Middle School student who has demonstrated the greatest interest and participation in all areas of the sciences.)

English Award: Rhea Khanna. (Awarded to the Middle School student who has displayed the greatest enthusiasm in the study of English.)

Wendall L. Winn Writing Award: Kate Jarvis. (Given to the student in the Middle School who has shown the greatest potential in creative writing.)

Mildred Lohnass Schneider Award: Bree Faulkner. (Annual award to a Middle School student for excellence in the study of English.) 

Howard R. Prince Geometry Award: Reece Newman. (Awarded annually by a friend of Norfolk Academy in honor of Captain Howard R. Prince, mathematics teacher at The Country Day School and Norfolk Academy until his retirement in June 1974, to the student who has shown the greatest improvement in plane geometry through hard work and determination.) 

Charles Mantel Mathematics Award: Lizzie Adams. (Awarded to the student who has achieved proficiency in mathematical skills through hard work, determination, and classroom citizenship.)

Victor and Joyce Ratnavale Latin Award: Zoë Jones. (Awarded annually by the family and friends of the Ratnavales, in memory of Victor and Joyce Ratnavale, to the student who has achieved proficiency in Latin through hard work, determination, and classroom citizenship.)

Athletic Award for Girls: Abby Smith. (Presented to the girl who is the best athlete in the Middle School and who, through actions on and off the field, exemplifies the fine aspect of athletics.)  

Athletic Award for Boys: Charlie Violette. (Presented to the boy who is the best athlete in the Middle School and who, through actions on and off the field, exemplifies the fine aspect of athletics.) 

Visual Art Award: Brice Yuill. (Awarded to a Middle School student who has consistently exhibited originality, creativity, and an understanding of the elements and principles of design.) 

Theater Arts Award: Susie Guzik. (Awarded for outstanding achievement on stage and overall commitment to Norfolk Academy’s Theater program.)

Radio Musical Theater Award: Ann Gray Golpira. (Awarded to a student who consistently demonstrated the highest caliber of creativity and artistic performance in the Winter Radio Musical.) 

Behind-the-scenes Award: Julian Burke. (Awarded to a student who has shown outstanding support of the many technical, physical, scenic, or organization elements and skills that go into creating a production.) 

Orchestra Award: Natalie Tajan. (Awarded for outstanding achievement in the orchestra program and overall commitment to the Norfolk Academy music program.)

Fine Arts Department Award: Kirsten Ackerman. (In recognition of talent, merit, and achievement of outstanding contributions, and of an unusual degree of loyalty, cooperation, and high qualities of conduct and performance in the Fine Arts.)

Colonel Anthony Lawson I Award: Joe Bakkar. (Annual award to the boy in Form III who has made the wisest use of his time during the school year.)

Mary Calvert Lawson Chandler Award: Lily Stockwell. (Annual award to the girl in Form III who has made the wisest use of her time during the school year.)

Matthew Thornton Austin Award: Areen Syed. (Awarded annually in memory of Matthew Thornton Austin to the Middle School boy or girl who makes the best use of his or her natural endowments and who quietly but consistently exhibits good sportsmanship, loyalty, friendliness, determination, perseverance, and exemplary strength of character.)

James B. Massey Award: Van Deans. (Presented to the Middle School student who, through character and integrity, has contributed most significantly to the student body in the areas of academics, athletics, and extracurricular activities.)

In addition, the Royster Student Council and Honor Council selected the Royster Teacher of the Year. That award recognizes the dedication and commitment that faculty provides throughout the school year. The recipient of this award is chosen based on character, integrity, and service to the school and community. This year's award went to Mr. Witt Borum. In addition to serving as an Assistant Director in the Middle School, Mr. Borum is Middle School Math Curriculum Coordinator.  





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