Moody High School senior Sarah Wilkes was named the 2015 St. Clair County Distinguished Young Woman Saturday.
Wilkes won over eight other participants throughout the county.
“I am crazy numb,” Wilkes said immediately after winning. “I am so excited and so blessed to be here right now and to have won is truly amazing.”
Wilkes won several categories including Self-Expression, Scholastics, Interview and Talent. She won $2,300 by winning DYW and a two-year scholarship to Jeff State Community College worth over $10,000.
Wilkes is the 18-year-old daughter of Judd and Angie Wilkes of Moody.
“Representing the City of Moody makes me real proud,” Wilkes said. “But now, being able to represent my county, and going to state is going to be amazing. Showcasing what I am able to do is quite remarkable.
Angie Wilkes said she was absolutely thrilled and so proud of her daughter.
“I’m excited she gets to move on to the state level and continue on with the program,” she said. “She has worked so very hard.”
Judd Wilkes said he too was extremely proud of his daughter.
“Everything has paid off, and it is due to the hard work she has put forth,” Mr. Wilkes said. “I want her to continue representing St. Clair County.”
All total, the St. Clair County DYW program awarded over $18,000 in cash and scholarship Saturday.
Finishing as first runner-up was Kasey Gamble from Victory Christian School.
Gamble also winner of the Be Your Best Self Essay, Fitness, Self-Expression and Scholastics.
Second runner-up was Pell City High School’s Keighan Spann. She too won in various categories such as Fitness, Self-Expression and Talent.
Other winners included Taylor Golden, Spirit Award as voted on by the other participants, Interview and Scholastics; Brooklyn Graff, Fitness; Brooke Walker, Talent; and Anna Caroline Adkins, Interview.
Wilkes will represent St. Clair County at the Distinguished Young Women of Alabama Program in January in Montgomery.
St. Clair DYW board member and volunteer Carol Hornsby said the DYW committee is so thankful for the support of the communities, volunteers, and the girls’ parents in producing this scholarship program each year.
“In the past 10 years, we have had 100 participants and an equal number of Little Sisters participate in our local program,” Hornsby said. “It’s overwhelming and humbling to hear story after story from these ladies as to how DYW helped prepare them for college life and job interviews, and to always “Be Your Best Self” in whatever challenges they may face in life.”
Distinguished Young Women, formerly America’s Junior Miss Scholarship Program, is sponsored by the City of Mobile, Mobile County, Encore Rehabilitation, SPANX, Wintzell’s Oyster House, Mobile Gas-A Sempra Company, Regions Bank, Alabama Power Foundation, and Master Boat Builders. The 56th National Finals will take place in Mobile, Alabama on June 26, 27 & 28, 2014. For more information about Distinguished Young Women, visit www.DistinguishedYW.org.