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ALEF Selects Its Third Class of Fellows

The Appalachian Leadership and Education Foundation (ALEF) has completed its selection process for the 2008 ALEF November Class.  This is the third year that ALEF has put together a group of young men and women from West Virginia who have extraordinary leadership, academic, and social skills and who have great potential to be the leaders in our communities, in government, and in our businesses.  Each new Fellow exhibited the core values ALEF espouses – integrity, excellence, and service.

2008 Charlie Class

 

Anthony Bellissimo

Shepherd University

Anthony is a graduate of Berkeley Springs High School in Morgan County. During high school, Anthony played varsity soccer, and also worked for the school’s newspaper. Anthony started YOWD, his own business. Anthony participated in Rachel’s Challenge, and taught his very own class. Anthony was given the wonderful opportunity to attend both the Princeton and Carnegie Mellon ID Tech Programs. In the fall, Anthony will attend Shepherd University and major in communications and business.

 

 

Courtney Blankenship

Concord University

Courtney is a graduate of Gilbert High School in Mingo County. Courtney was a very active member of the Gilbert High School Marching Band, Captain of the Majorette Squad, and a member of the Concert Band throughout her four years. As a senior, Courtney also tutored children in grades 2nd through 6th after school. Courtney received the All-County Band Award and the Honor Roll Award all four years at Gilbert. Courtney volunteered at the Baisden Fire Department, the Red Cross Blood Drive, and Energy Express. In the fall, Courtney will attend Concord University where she will major in elementary education.

 

Jerad Cook

Concord University

Jerad is a graduate of Westside High School in Wyoming County. While at Westside, Jerad was a member and captain of the football team. Jerad earned the National Honor Society Award as an 11th grader. As a 12th grader, Jerad was a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Jerad also participated in the Brain Trust all four years of high school. In the fall, Jerad will be attending Concord University and will enroll in the pre-med program.

 

Paul Cyrus

Marshall University

Paul is a graduate of St. Albans High School in Kanawha County. Paul played football at St. Albans for four years. In addition, he was a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Paul was a member of the National Honor Society from the 10th through 12th grade, and he also received the “Best Attitude Award” as the senior football player who displayed the best attitude during his football career. Paul ended high school with a 3.93 cumulative grade point average, and he will be attending Marshall University in the fall and major in civil engineering.

 

Cassidi Hall

Concord University

Cassidi is a graduate of Greenbrier East High School in Greenbrier County. Cassidi was a member of the National Honor Society, a member of the Concert Band, and Captain of the Color Guard all four years. Cassidi also received the Mathematics Award, President’s Education Award, and the Who’s Who Among High School Students Award. During high school, she volunteered at the Wal-Mart Egg Hunt and at several Children’s Miracle Network Events. In the fall, Cassidi will attend Concord University and major in education.

 

Carrie Honaker

Concord University

Carrie is a graduate of Greenbrier East High School in Greenbrier County. Carrie was a 4-year member of Student Government, National Honor Society, and Choir. Carrie also participated on the tennis and cheerleading team at Greenbrier East. Carrie was a very active member of the 4-H Club, where she received numerous awards throughout her high school career. Carrie graduated in the top 2% of her class, and finished with a cumulative 3.93 grade point average. Carrie will major in secondary education with a concentration in biology at Concord University.

 

Jonathan Hunt

Concord University

Jonathan is a graduate of Independence High School in Raleigh County. Jonathan was a member of the football and baseball teams all four years. He also was a National Honors Society Member in both the 11th and 12th grade. Jonathan served as the President of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes throughout high school. As a senior, Jonathan earned 2nd Team All-State in football, and 1st team All Coalfield Conference in football. Jonathan served as a volunteer at the FCA Office and the Upward Basketball Program. In the fall, Jonathan will be attending Concord University.

 

Robert May

Concord University

Robert is a graduate of Gilbert High School in Mingo County. During his time at Gilbert, Robert was a member of Student Council, Band, and Yearbook staff. In addition, Robert played on the basketball team during his 10th, 11th, and 12th grade years. Robert was on the Honor Roll all four years, and he also received the Art Award and the Civics Award. Robert volunteered at Bible School, “Operation Ho, Ho, Ho,” and collected donations for St. Jude Hospital. In the fall, Robert will attend Concord University where he will major in education.

 

Jese Vance

Marshall University

Jese is a graduate of Clay County High School in Clay County. Jese served as president of the FFA throughout high school, and also participated in the Boy Scouts of America from 9th through 12th grade. As a sophomore, Jese earned 3rd place at the “State Meats Champion” competition, and during his junior year won 1st place at the “State Beef Expo.” As a junior, Jese also became a member of the National Honor Society. Jese earned a cumulative 4.0 grade point average at Clay County, and in the fall he will attend Marshall University and major in civil engineering.

 

Cody Vinson

Concord University

Cody is a graduate of Westside High School in Wyoming County. At Westside, Cody was a 4-year member and captain of the tennis team, a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and Co-Ed-Hi-Y. Cody also participated in theater, and earned recognition as a member of the National Honor Society and Spanish National Honor Society. Cody volunteered and served as a coordinator in the Bike-a-thon to benefit St. Jude’s Children Hospital. Cody earned a cumulative 4.0 grade point average at Westside, and he will attend Concord University in the fall majoring in biology.

 

Samantha Wagner

Concord University

Samantha is a graduate of Westside High School in Wyoming County. She was a four-year member of the Fellowship for Christian Athletes and Pep Club. Samantha also participated in Student Council, Cheerleading, and Dance during her 10th, 11th, and 12th grade years. Samantha received a “Distinguished Writing” award as a 10th grader and as an 11th grader was a member of the National Honor Society. Samantha volunteered at Vacation Bible School, the Wyoming Youth Council, and Adopt-a-Highway. In the fall, Samantha will attend Concord and enroll in the pre-med program.

 

Dustin Woods

Concord University

Dustin is a graduate of Huntington High School in Cabell County. While at Huntington High, Dustin was a member of the wrestling and football teams from 9th through the 12th grade. Dustin was also a member of Mu Alpha Theta as an 11th and 12th grader.

While in high school, Dustin volunteered at the Cammack M.S. Wrestling Tournament, and the Huntington Pee-Wee Wrestling Tournament. In the fall, Dustin will attend Concord University and will enroll in the pre-med program.


 

Meet the Fellows from other classes.