Soroptimists award local scholarships

Soroptimist International of Ashland will award nearly $40,000 in scholarships and other grants to local women at its annual awards luncheon on Wednesday, May 12, at the Ashland Springs Hotel.

Susan Hollandsworth, principal of Helman Elementary School, will receive $3,000 for the Soroptimist Strong Girls, Strong Women program, which begins its third year in September and benefits girls in kindergarten through fifth grade.

Kimberly Thompson will be given $2,000 from the Ashland club and $5,000 as the Northwest regional winner of the Women's Opportunity Award. Nica Pap will receive $1,000. This award aids women who are their families' primary wage-earners and are enrolled in a vocational training or undergraduate program.

The Soroptimist Vicki Smith Memorial Scholarship recipient will receive $2,000. The scholarship goes to a female senior at Ashland High School who has demonstrated academic accomplishment and social responsibility.

A total of $3,000 will be awarded to Southern Oregon University athletes Katie Moy (softball), Liz Kiger (tennis), Kelly Clark (track/cross country), Leah Bergstrom (volleyball), Jessica Kuehlwein (soccer) and Josi McDermott (basketball).

Jessica Plascencia, the recipient of the vocational-technical scholarship, will be awarded $500. Cicily Crechriou, the SOU grant-in-aid winner, will receive $1,400. To qualify for this award, an SOU female student must excel scholastically, contribute to the community, and have a desire to enter a profession of service.

The Violet Richardson Award winner, Maraya Best, an Ashland High School senior, will receive $200. This award recognizes the volunteer efforts of girls age 14-17.

Delta Ferguson will be honored as the Ruby Award winner for her work at the SOU Women's Resource Center. This award honors women who are making extraordinary differences in the lives of women or girls. Ferguson will receive $200 to be donated to a charity of her choice.

The Ashland club will make a contribution of $25,884 to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival FAIR program. This program fosters a collaborative exchange of knowledge, skills and perspectives between the experienced and the next generation of theater practitioners. The donation represents half of the profits of Soroptimist International Ashland's operation of the OSF Elizabethan Theatre's pillow and blanket rental booth.

For more information about Soroptimist, go to

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