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Sen. Blake Tillery Announces Winners of Third Biennial Youth Legislator Scholarship Competition

Sen. Blake Tillery Announces  Winners of Third Biennial Youth  Legislator Scholarship Competition Sen. Blake Tillery Announces  Winners of Third Biennial Youth  Legislator Scholarship Competition

Sen. Blake Tillery (R – Vidalia) announced the first, second and third place winners of his Third Biennial Youth Legislator Scholarship Competition for the students of the 19th Senatorial District. Middle and High School students were asked to submit an essay on one of two prompts with the purpose of inspiring youth to get involved with the state government process. This year, the topics were centralized around two main themes: (a) how has the COVID-19 pandemic affected social interactions and what do you hope to see as we return to normal conditions; or (b) what incentivizes you to build a life and career in rural Georgia, and what steps should the state take to encourage young individuals to stay in these non-metropolitan areas.

First Place

Miss Lydia Sammons of Montgomery County won the Grand Prize with her essay on encouraging students to remain or return to rural areas. “I was truly impressed with Ms. Sammons’ submission as it offered significant insight on incentives that would better motivate aspiring young individuals like her to remain in rural Georgia,” said Sen. Tillery. “She had some amazing ideas that I believe will serve the future of our community.” For her efforts, Miss Sammons was awarded $250.00 and was given the opportunity to select an instructor who has impacted her for an additional reward. She selected Mr. Jeff McCormick, her dual-enrollment History teacher, to receive the additional $150.00. Lydia is a senior at Vidalia Heritage Academy where she is a member of the Harvard Model Congress team, the varsity tennis team, and the track and field teams. Outside of school, Lydia works at Chick-Fil-A of Vidalia and is a member of Grace Community Presbyterian Church. Upon graduation, Lydia is interested in studying Criminal Justice. She is the daughter of Brent and Katy Sammons of Mount Vernon.

Miss Jada Clements of Toombs County won the second place prize with her essay regarding the societal effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. In her essay, Jada detailed manners by which the pandemic impacted social interaction and positive memorable moments of the quarantine. For her efforts, Miss Clements was awarded $150.00. Jada is a sophomore at Vidalia High School where she is a member of the highly acclaimed One Act team. Upon graduation, Jada intends to pursue a degree in college. She is the daughter of Kristian Clements of Vidalia.

Third Place

Miss Carleigh Wardlaw of Toombs County won the third place prize with her essay regarding the impacts of the COVID- 19 pandemic. In her essay, Carleigh reflected on the time spent in quarantine and detailed the importance of social interaction, especially for young individuals. For her efforts, Miss Wardlaw was awarded $100.00. Carleigh is a junior at Vidalia High School where she is a member of the basketball team. Upon graduation, Carleigh wants to attend college. She is the daughter of Tony and Stephanie Wardlaw of Vidalia

Sen. Blake Tillery serves as Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. He represents the 19th Senate District, which includes Appling, Jeff Davis, Long, Montgomery, Telfair, Toombs, Treutlen, Wayne, and Wheeler counties and a portion of Liberty and Tattnall counties. He can be reached by email at [email protected] gov.

Second Place


SECOND PLACE — L to R: Second Place Winner Jada Clements and Sen. Blake Tillery.

THIRD PLACE — L to R: Third Place Winner Carleigh Wardlaw and Sen. Blake Tillery.

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