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Commishes, Sister Partnership Association honor students

By Judith Pannebaker BCC Editor

Bandera County Commissioners Court recently recognized three local students for their participation in the Sister Partnership Association that offered cultural exchange opportunities in Poland and Ukraine.
Nominees for outstanding Sister Partnership Association 2011 Student Ambassador were Triston Adamson, Michael Mazurek and Animate Mazurek. During the meeting on Thursday, April 12, Special Ambassador Elenora Dugosh Goodley announced that Animate Mazurek had been selected as Outstanding Student Ambassador. All students had participated in the 2011 local delegation to the Opole Region in Poland.
Although unable to attend the ceremony, in a letter, Erin Gray, Bandera County Sister Partnership school exchange director, thanked the trio of students for their exemplary work.
In part, she wrote, "Each of the honorees represented Bandera in the best ways possible. They gladly partook in all activities and maintained smiles throughout the two weeks spent in Poland."
Additionally, Gray said that when the students were unexpectedly thrown into the spotlight, "They did a wonderful job - without preparation or warning of the modified expectations."
Bandera Independent School District Superintendent Regina Howell presented a certificate and plaque to Adamson; Precinct 4 Commissioner Doug King, who also serves as commissioners court representative to the sister partnership association, made a similar presentation to Michael Mazurek; and County Judge Richard Evans presented 2001 Outstanding Student Ambassador Animate Maurek with her certificate and plaque.
Thanking the court for sponsoring what she described as "this historic event," Goodley noted this had served as the first presentation that honored outstanding student ambassadors in the school exchange program.
Evans noted happily, "A lot of times I only deal with local youth in the juvenile court system so it's nice to know we have young people like you all."
"This has been a positive program since day one," commented Precinct 2 Commissioner Bobby Harris. "I hope this will serve to counteract a lot of negative press we've been having from this county."
In her letter, Gray continued, "These students stood out as prime examples when it came down to respect and cultural exchanges." She also thanked commissioners "for allowing us the opportunity to recognize them in such a positive way. They truly deserve it."

Pictured: Participants in the ceremony honoring nominees for outstanding Sister Partnership Association 2011 Student Ambassador for the Sister Partnership Association included, from left, County Judge Richard Evans, Triston Adamson, Bandera ISD Superintendent Regina Howell, Animate Mazurek, Precinct 4 Commissioner Doug King, Michael Mazurek, Roy Dugosh, Special Ambassador Elenora Dugosh Goodley and Jerry and Harriet Payne.