Medina native named to Dean’s List at Slippery Rock U.

Staff Reports Posted 7 June 2021 at 3:18 pm

SLIPPERY ROCK, PA – Destiny Satkowski of Medina is on the Dean’s List for the spring 2021 semester at Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania.

The Dean’s List consists of SRU undergraduate students who earned an adjusted semester grade-point average of 3.5 or higher, based on a schedule of at least 12 newly attempted and earned credits.

14 youths in Orleans County recognized for outstanding service to community, families

Posted 17 May 2021 at 12:01 pm

Press Release, Orleans County Youth Bureau

The Orleans County Youth Board typically holds a Youth Recognition Banquet annually to recognize those youth who continuously go above and beyond for our community.

The Youth Recognition Awards are presented to youth who are positive role models, have performed outstanding service for their community, and/or have assumed extraordinary roles within their families.

Even though we are unable to hold the banquet due to the pandemic, the Youth Board wanted to share and celebrate these individuals.  We would like to recognize the 14 youths who would have had a night to celebrate their contributions with their nominators, family and friends by sharing a brief bio about each of them and why they were selected by the board to receive the awards in 2021.

They are all in receipt of their awards at this time, which include commendations from the Orleans County Legislature, U.S. Congressman Chris Jacobs, Assemblyman Steve Hawley, and Senator Robert Ortt.  They also received a yard sign in their honor, a t-shirt, a gift card, and a certificate from the Youth Board.

This year’s recipients of the Youth Recognition Awards are as follows:

James Michael Beach

James Michael Beach, 16, of Albion High School is an extraordinary young man who exemplifies the characteristics of this award. He is passionate about giving of himself and sharing his talents with others. James completed his service learning requirements for school and then just kept seeking ways to give back to the community. To date, James has logged over 90 hours of community service in a variety of ways. He has been involved in grounds and maintenance projects, serving and cleanup for the Barre Center Presbyterian Church’s Chicken BBQs, and providing special music for church services.

Following a youth group Christmas caroling activity at Clover Hill, James took it upon himself to go back on numerous Saturday mornings to play piano and call BINGO for the residents. James also volunteered at the Hoag Library organizing and helping with children’s crafts. He has also helped and prepared dinners at the Community Kitchen. James is very involved in many activities at school and holds down a part-time job, but does not let his busy schedule keep him from giving back to the community. James is an excellent role model for the younger members of his church and is always willing to assist his elders in any way he can.

Nominator: Nancy Good, Church Member (Barre Center Presbyterian Church)

Parents/Guardians: Mike & Jaime Beach

Aedan Bunch

Aedan Bunch, 18, of Norman Howard School has exhibited a strong commitment to community service through his church. During the bitter cold and heavy snow that February brought, Aedan volunteered to clear the sidewalks and steps of the church, which provided safe access to the building. Although the church was not holding services at the time, the church’s neighbor, The Medicine Shoppe, was using the building to administer Covid-19 vaccines. Because the sidewalks and entrance ways were cleared by Aedan, along with improved weather conditions, hundreds of local residents were able to receive the vaccine with safe and easy footing.

Aedan is also an active member of a Demolay chapter separate from his church, where he actively participates in several fundraisers and service projects, including food and clothing drives. He has decorated and cleaned graves on Veterans Day and Memorial Day and also volunteered at the Iroquois National Wildlife Reserve. Aedan takes pride in giving back to his community and he understands the need to lend a hand when help is needed.

Nominator: Cynthia Kiebala, Church Member (St. John’s Episcopal Church)

Parents/Guardians: Ann & Steve Bunch

Andrew Drechsel

Andrew Drechsel, 18, of Holley Central School is a shining example of a student who truly believes in giving back to others and helping to make his community a better place. Andrew is a member of the Holley Interact Club and is always willing to participate in any opportunity that comes his way. He has done it all: Day of Shopping, Day of Caring, working at Open Door Mission, and helping out Sample Soap.

Andrew has also been a member of 4-H and is in the final stages of receiving his Eagle Scout award.  He worked an unpaid position at the Holley Summer Recreation Program and is also a member of his church’s youth group. Andrew worked at almost all of the food distribution sites during the pandemic, loading boxes of food into the vehicles. He also volunteered for the Sports Boosters to help prepare the soccer field for the upcoming season. He worked tirelessly alongside Penny cleaning and digging out the garden that welcomes fans to the field. Andrew’s community is so grateful for all that he does. He is truly an amazing young man!

Nominator: Penny Cole, Counseling Secretary

Parents/Guardians: Trina Lorentz Lang & Scott Lang

Ianah Drisdom

Ianah Drisdom, 17, of Medina High School is an outstanding asset to the school and community. She has participated in numerous volunteer activities throughout her time in high school. She shows superior time management skills while balancing responsibilities as a National Honor Society member, working a part-time job, and maintaining good grades.

Ianah started volunteering in 9th grade where she worked feeding and helping the homeless, which was a humbling experience for her. It provided her an opportunity of self-reflection and appreciation for things in life. She has also volunteered at a family business and during football games where she worked the concession stand and helped clean up afterward. This was a tremendous help to the high school. Ianah has had a positive impact on the Medina community.

Nominator: Nicholas Michalak, School Counselor

Parent/Guardian: Karen Boston

Tatum Gagne

Tatum Gagne, 16, of Holley High School has made it her purpose to try and spread cheer and happiness throughout the school. For the second year in a row, Tatum created and addressed holiday cards to every single student and faculty member and delivered them. What seemed like a small gesture meant a lot to others, especially to some students who felt isolated or lonely.

Tatum also took initiative when she saw a 7th grader sitting alone at lunch and became a big sister to this young lady. She eats with her weekly and checks in on her inside and outside of school. Tatum has truly gone above and beyond and has made a huge difference for this young lady. As a member of the Holley Rotary Interact Club, Tatum has worked hard doing behind the scenes tasks, which are especially necessary in this pandemic year. Tatum is the classic example of making the school, community, and world a better place, one small act at a time.

Nominator: Samantha Zelent, School Social Worker

Parents/Guardians: David & Becky Gagne

Amanda Garza

Amanda Garza, 16, of Lyndonville High School plays an extraordinary role inside and outside of the school community. Amanda demonstrates an amazing work ethic that is an inspiration for her peers. Amanda serves as president of the school’s Diversity Club, where she provides a strong sense of leadership and her work around the building has helped to raise awareness of cultural diversity. She has never been heard to speak negatively about another person and is never drawn into conflict. Instead, she displays a level of kindness and maturity that is a model for other students.

As president of the Spanish Club, Amanda took charge of calling and running meetings, fundraising, encouraging members, and participating in all club activities. She enjoys sharing her Hispanic culture and is proud of both her Puerto Rican and Mexican heritage. Amanda proposed, organized and carried out a cultural cooking lesson with her mother so her class was able to learn about Mexican cooking traditions and culture. Amanda is described as dedicated, helpful, smart, kind, and mature. The faculty at Lyndonville is proud to recognize Amanda for her many contributions to the school.

Nominator: Aaron Slack, Principal

Parents/Guardians: Luis & Marlene Garza

Megan Harrington

Megan Harrington, 18, of Holley High School has been a key member of the Holley Interact Club since her freshman year. Megan has always gone above and beyond in planning and organizing community activities. She was integral in making the first Annual Day of Caring a successful event that helped out a local nursing home, PAWS Animal Shelter, the Holley Community Center, and many community members who received gift cards on their cars.

Megan has volunteered at the Day of Shopping for several years, Open Door Mission, and Sample Soap. She is one of the first students to sign up and help with anything needed. Megan will be missed by the Interact Club following graduation. Megan is kind, organized, and empathetic towards others.

Nominator: Samantha Zelent, School Social Worker

Parents/Guardians: Scott and Dione Harrington

Collin Longer

Collin Longer, 18, of Albion High School is an active member of various extracurricular activities. Collin has been a member of FFA, Recycling Club, and Student Government. As a member of these clubs, Collin has been a natural leader for his peers and is willing to take on responsibility for projects within these clubs.

Collin has shown leadership skills by volunteering to complete the school’s morning announcements. More importantly, Collin’s independence and desire to better himself is admirable. Collin has overcome many obstacles placed before him. He is not afraid to ask questions and he knows how to advocate for himself when needed. Collin is doing his best to balance his academics, trying to cope with living in a pandemic, and the passing of his father earlier this year. Collin is a courageous young man who has certainly taken on an extraordinary role in his family.

Nominator: Valerie Pettit, School Counselor

Parents/Guardians: Wendy Preston

Kohl Morgan

Kohl Morgan, 17, of Holley High School is a natural born leader. He is kind, empathetic, and a hard worker. He has made a huge difference in both his school and his community. As a valued member of the Holley Interact Club, Kohl is always willing to help with any activity. He has helped with the Annual Day of Shopping for several years and was an integral part of the first Annual Day of Caring.

Kohl has also helped make lunches at the Open Door Mission and has collected and distributed hygiene supplies for Sample Soap. He has participated in Clean Sweeps and other activities in the elementary school. Kohl is the first one to dive in and get work done. He also engages other students to help and the students truly look up to him. Wherever Kohl goes, others follow. Kohl is the first student thought of when in need of a loving and caring hand to help another student. He is always ready to help even when others are not. He is an amazing young man and the Holley community is truly blessed to have him.

Nominator: Samantha Zelent, School Social Worker & Penny Cole, Counseling Secretary

Parents/Guardians: Jennifer & Steven Morgan

Waylon Peet

Waylon Peet, 18, of Kendall Central School is committed to making the Kendall community a better place. Waylon is very involved with the Kendall Fire Department where he is an active firefighter. Prior to being accepted into the Fire Department, he was a “junior” firefighter.

Waylon has volunteered to work the Annual Carnival for several years. Many members took notice of his hard work and dedication to helping the organization. Since joining, he has attended training sessions, meetings and state classes. He is also an important member of his family. Due to extenuating circumstances, Waylon is required to take on extra responsibilities at home. He helps to keep order in the house and is a mentor to his younger siblings.

Nominator: Carol D’Agostino, Principal

Parents/Guardians: Melinda Roberts & Stephen Peet

Colburn Spierdowis

Colburn Spierdowis, 17, of Albion High School has completed an outstanding amount of community service at several area organizations. Colburn has given many hours to the Boy Scouts of America where he helped with various projects and activities.

He has demonstrated a gift for working with youth. He has volunteered as an assistant with the Cub Scouts and has volunteered at the Sportsmen’s Club Kid’s Fishing Derby as a supervisor. Colburn has also served as an assistant at local soccer camps, helping to teach skills and fundamentals. Colburn is praised as helpful and respectful. He is always dependable and a great role model for youth to look up to.

Nominator: Eric Christiansen, Counseling Department Chairperson

Parent/Guardian: Karen Spierdowis

Allison Trowbridge

Allison Trowbridge, 17, of Holley Central School is one of the first ones to step up and volunteer to do anything that is needed. Allison volunteers through her involvement with Interact Club and her Cheer Squad. She has been a part of Interact Club since 7th grade where she has assisted with cleaning up at animal shelters, making care packages for the homeless, and working on numerous other activities.

As part of her Cheer Squad, Allison participates in volunteer projects such as visiting nursing homes during the holidays and helping athletes at the Special Olympics. The number of hours Allison commits to these above-mentioned projects is too numerous to count.  Outside of school, Allison holds down a part-time job while also helping to take care of her Nana who suffers from Alzheimer’s. She also assists her Papa with household chores. Allison is the type of young lady who steps up whenever she is needed by anyone!

Nominator: Sarah Trowbridge, Mother

Parents/Guardians: Ken & Sarah Trowbridge

Charles Turpyn

Charles Turpyn (“Chuck”), 17, of Holley High School is an amazing and caring young man. He has faced many challenges this past year and he rose to the occasion for all. He has been a member of the Interact Club for 3 years and has participated in all activities, including the Day of Caring and the Fall into Reading event.

Chuck can always be counted on to participate in activities and does a lot of the hard behind-the-scenes work. This year, he went above and beyond taking care of family members experiencing medical issues. Chuck is extremely modest about his contributions, but he can always be counted on to do what is best for his school, community and family.

Nominator: Samantha Zelent, School Social Worker

Parents/Guardians: Katie Niederhofer and Charles Turpyn

Evan Thomas Valentine

Evan Thomas Valentine, 18, of Holley High School was such a wonderful young man who was caring and loving to everyone and everything.  Evan was full of faith, kindness, and generosity. Evan battled Leukemia for 2 and half years before passing away on February 21st of this year. He still continued to help others while being sick and receiving treatments. In January 2020, there was a horrific house fire in the community and, despite being worn down from treatment, Evan was at the Social Center of St. Mary’s in Holley, sorting through clothes and household items.

Evan served as Alter Server as well as Sacristan at St. Mary’s where he won Alter Server of the Year in 2018. Throughout his battles, he always had a smile, never complained about his circumstances and always had a positive, infectious energy about him. Evan was a life-time member of the Boy Scouts of America, where he achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. His project was completed at the Veteran’s Memorial at the American Legion Post in Holley, in honor of him, by friends and family. Once you met Evan, you were never the same. He left his handprint on everyone that he touched.

Nominator: Penny Cole, Counseling Secretary

Parents/Guardians: Neil & Diane Valentine

Youth Board recognizes 2 adults for dedication to kids

Posted 17 May 2021 at 11:28 am

Vickie Scroger, Jason Requa make extra effort for local youth

Photos and information courtesy of Orleans County Youth Board

The Orleans County Youth Board is recognizing two adults in the community for their dedication to young people.

The Youth Board typically recognizes an adult worker and an adult volunteer during the annual Youth Recognition Banquet. This year the awards program won’t be held in person due to Covid-19 restrictions and concerns.

The Helen R. Brinsmaid Memorial Youth Worker Award is named for Brinsmaid, who have 33 years of community service in Orleans County. The award is presented to a paid professional who emulates dedication and service to youth and families above and beyond their paid position.

Vickie Scroger

Vickie Scroger is this year’s winner. She is the manager of food service at Holley Central School where she always makes sure the students have delicious, balanced meals for breakfast, lunch and after-school snacks.

While this is her job and what is expected of her, she always does more than she needs to, according to penny Cole, a co-worker who nominated Scroger.

In her role as food service manager, Scroger decorates the dining hall and serving areas for each holiday and/or event. During Homecoming, she has all of the different sports teams recognized with their own soccer ball, football, track shoe, or megaphone with each student’s name.

This takes countless hours, yet she does it each year. During the week of the musical, Vickie has musical themed menus for each day and, again, decorates to match the show. She does sports banquets at cost, so that all athletes and their families can attend when otherwise they wouldn’t be able to.

She has always gone out of her way to make things nice for the kids. Last year when the pandemic hit, she worked tirelessly to come up with different fun meals for the students. Vickie went above and beyond to make sure the students had filling, hot meals.

The parents would come each day to pick up breakfast and lunch, which meant preparing 180 meals most days, for both meals. She would also bake homemade cookies for them once in a while as a treat.

At Easter, she purchased Easter eggs and filled them with little candies so students would have a treat. Vickie had a team of helpers to assist her but the success of this was all Vickie’s planning and preparation. She genuinely loves the students and this past year has shown just how much. She always says, “It’s about the kids or it’s for the kids.” The Holley School District is extremely lucky to have such a remarkable, kind and caring lady.

In memory and spirit of Eileen Heye, the Eileen Heye Adult Volunteer Recognition Award honors an individual who is a role model for the youth of today and gives of themselves to better the lives of children.

Jason Requa

Jason Requa is the type of person that stands off to the side, just out of reach of most cameras, and lifts others towards the spotlight. He has led many young people in developing life skills and has never asked for anything in return. He truly wants to see the youth of his community grow into great adults. Jason works for the Local 3 Brick and Tile Setters Union in Rochester. His job requires frequent travel, but Jason still manages to help coach soccer, serve as a member of the Kendall Board of Education, and assist with Eagle Scout projects – all while supporting his own family.

Jason’s commitment to volunteerism within the community is admirable, said Kendall Scoutmaster Ken Spohr, who nominated Requa for the award.

Jason is always dedicated to becoming a better coach and leader. He has the ability to reach the hearts, minds and skill sets of the youth, which shows through his coaching. Jason’s passion for teaching life-long confidence and skill sets does not end at coaching, as he is a huge influence with the Kendall Boy Scouts. He used his knowledge of masonry work to teach the scouts, which led them to be able to complete the physical labor to finish their project at the Kendall War Memorial.

He has also spent countless hours educating youth about opportunities after high school in the skilled trades fields. Jason’s long-term influence on youth has already molded them into confident and successful college students, detailed skilled tradesmen, and dedicated people serving our country.

Through his employment with the union, he reaches young veterans through a program called Helmets to Hard Hats, to help them get jobs in trades after leaving the service. The strength of Jason’s influence is directly related to his dedication to youth, but he also leads by example as an adult who gives back to his community.

Supportive Care honors 2 for commitment to agency

Posted 12 May 2021 at 12:46 pm

Provided photos: From left includes Kellie Spychalski, CEO of Supportive Care of Orleans; Lynn Burgess, 2020 Business/Civic Award Winner; and Christine Fancher, Social Worker/Volunteer Coordinator.

Press Release, Supportive Care of Orleans

ALBION – Supportive Care of Orleans is proud to announce the following award winners for the year 2020 for both the Business/Civic Award as well as the Mary Janet Sahukar Award.

The 2020 Business/Civic Award was presented to Lynn Burgess of Lynn’s Salon in Albion. Lynn has been instrumental in helping support our Annual Spring Bouquet Sale for many years and never ceases to amaze the organization with her overwhelming support. Lynn has also been a strong supporter over the past several years helping contribute to many of our other fundraising events.

Pictured from left include Kellie Spychalski, CEO; Doug Miller, 2020 Mary Janet Sahukar Award Winner; and Christine Fancher, Social Worker/Volunteer Coordinator.

The 2020 Mary Janet Sahukar Award was presented to Doug Miller. Doug has been a part of many campus projects this past year including the expansion of the organization’s parking lot. He and his wife Sue donate large planters and flowers to the Martin-Linsin campus each year and they bring so much beauty to those who enter the front doors.

Doug has also been extremely instrumental in assisting the agency wherever needed, including his Board of Director duties with the organization. He has a kind, giving heart, and we are so very excited to share this aware with him.

Supportive Care of Orleans would like to again thank both Lynn Burgess and Doug Miller for their contributions and continued efforts to help support the mission of the organization.

8 from Orleans/Niagara BOCES earn medals at NYS SkillsUSA Competition

Provided photos: These students earned medals in the NYS SkillsUSA Competition. Pictured, bottom row, from left: Brendan Zimmerman, Hanna Willard, Zach Duewiger and Shelby Wolf. Top Row: Rebecca Berner, Mackenzie Clogston, Maddie Gancasz and Teddy Wojciechowski.

Posted 30 April 2021 at 1:43 pm

Press Release, Orleans/Niagara BOCES

MEDINA – Eight Orleans/Niagara BOCES students medaled at the New York State SkillsUSA Competition it was announced this week. Congratulations go to:

  • 1st Place – Rebecca Berner (Royalton-Hartland) for Health Occupations Portfolio (OCTEC/Allied Health)
  • 1st Place – Mackenzie Clogston (Newfane) for Basic Health Care (OCTEC/Health Occupations Technician)
  • 1st Place – Maddie Gancasz (Barker) for Early Childhood Education (OCTEC/Early Childhood Education)
  • 1st Place – Teddy Wojciechowski (Royalton-Hartland) for Technical Drafting (OCTEC/Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering Program)
  • 1st Place – Brendan Zimmerman (Lewiston-Porter) for Welding (NCTEC/Welding)
  • 2nd Place – Hanna Willard (Royalton-Hartland) for Cosmetology Senior (OCTEC/Cosmetology Program)
  • 2nd Place – Zach Duewiger (Royalton-Hartland) for CNC Milling (OCTEC/Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering Program)
  • 3rd Place – Shelby Wolf (Royalton-Hartland) for Job Interview (OCTEC/Allied Health Program)

Due to the pandemic, the contests were conducted virtually this year from the Orleans (OCTEC) and Niagara (NCTEC) Career and Technical Education Centers. The purpose of the competitions are to evaluate contestants’ knowledge and skills and to recognize outstanding students for excellence and professionalism.

SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. First place students will be moving on to the National SkillsUSA competition virtually at the end of June. We are super proud of all these students and all the students who participated!


Albion fire chief presented citation for 51 years of service in Albion FD

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 29 April 2021 at 7:12 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

ALBION — Mayor Eileen Banker on Wednesday evening presents a citation expressing “sincere appreciation and gratitude” on behalf of the Village of Albion and Albion Village Board to Harry Papponetti, who is stepping down next month as Albion fire chief.

Papponetti has served 51 years as an Albion firefighter, including three stints as fire chief, from May 1979 to April 1984, January 1998 to April 2003, and since May 2015. He has been part of the department’s leadership for the past 49 years.

“Your positive example of sacrifice and devotion on behalf of our community has taken many hours and sometimes days away from your own family,” the citation states. “This board, along with the residents of the Village of Albion, sincerely thank you!”

The citation is signed by Mayor Banker, and trustees Chris Barry, Zack Burgess, Stan Farone and Gary Katsanis.

Harry Papponetti, who is also Albion’s animal control officer, accepts the citation during Wednesday’s Village Board meeting.

“I want to thank everybody on the past and present Village Boards,” Papponetti said. “They have all been very appreciative of the fire department.”

Alayna Trautman of Roy-Hart wins state leadership award for career and tech

Posted 2 April 2021 at 8:45 am

Photos courtesy of Orleans/Niagara BOCES: Electricity/Electronics teacher Bill Leggett, OCTEC Assistant Principal Nicole Goyette, Alayna Trautman and OCTEC Principal Michael Mann commend Trautman for the award.

Press Release, Orleans/Niagara BOCES

MEDINA – Congratulations go to Alayna Trautman, a senior from Royalton-Hartland and an Electricity/Electronics student at the Orleans/Niagara BOCES’ Orleans Career and Technical Education Center.

Alayna is the recipient of the Thomas Olivo Leadership Award from the New York State Association of Career and Technical Education Administrators (NYSACTEA). This award was named in honor of C. Thomas Olivo, who was the New York State Education Department’s director of Vocational Education in 1966, when VICA (now known as Skills USA) was established.

Dr. Olivo had the foresight to see the value of instituting a youth organization for students enrolled in secondary trade, industrial, technical and health occupations. He advocated developing leadership skills through participation in career oriented student organizations, a goal that ACTEA continues to support today. Students receiving this award are honored with a $500 scholarship from ACTEA.

Dr. Michael Weyrauch, Career and Technical Education director at Orleans/Niagara BOCES, said the school is thrilled with Alayna’s accomplishments.

“She is an outstanding individual,” Weyrauch said. “She is hardworking, dedicated and is always thinking of others. We are very proud of her.”

Dr. Hank Stopinski, superintendent of Royalton-Hartland Central School District, added, “The entire Roy-Hart community is proud of all that Alayna has accomplished during her time at our district and BOCES. She is truly a student who represents all that we hope all students will aspire, living the RAMS way, every day!”

Roy-Hart Superintendent Dr. Hank Stopinski, Roy-Hart High School Principal Gary Bell, Alayna Trautman and Roy-Hart Counselor Colleen Albee celebrate Trautman’s recognition.

Medina resident named NY Air Nation Guard’s ‘Outstanding Senior Non-commissioned Officer of the Year’

Posted 17 March 2021 at 3:01 pm

Press Release, New York National Guard

Master Sgt. Michael Owczarczak

NIAGARA FALLS AIR RESERVE STATION – New York Air National Guard Master Sgt. Michael Owczarczak, a Medina resident, a combat veteran, and a member of the 107th Attack Wing who also served in the Army National Guard, has been named Outstanding Senior Non-commissioned Officer of the Year for the 5,800- member New York Air National Guard.

Owczarczak serves as the unit training manager of the 107th Attack Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, based at Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station.

Owczarczak was selected for the award by a board made up of senior enlisted leaders from across the New York Air National Guard.

The New York National Guard picks four Airmen of the Year annually in the categories of First Sergeant, Airman, Non-Commissioned Officer and Senior Non-Commissioned Officer.

“Sergeant Owczarczak distinguishing himself as a resilient and strategic leader built for success,” said Command Chief Master Sgt. Denny Richardson, the senior enlisted leader for the New York Air National Guard.

Owczarczak enlisted in the New York Army National Guard in 1998 and served as a combat medic assigned to the 105th Military Police Company in Buffalo. He joined the New York Air National Guard and the 107th Security Forces Squadron in 2001.

In September 2019, Owczarczak deployed to Al Asad Air Base in Iraq, where he served as superintendent of plans and programs. He coordinated efforts to protect equipment valued at $3 billion, and led a joint, Norwegian and American response force to help secure airfield perimeter defense, safeguarding 4,500 coalition personnel.

When the base came under Iranian missile attack on January 8, 2020, Owczarczak played a key role in responding to the attack, Richardson said.

He received the Bronze Star in recognition of his efforts.

“His accomplishments of this past year to include the deployment, earning a Bronze star, and multiple award categories is no surprise to anyone he works with,” said Chief Master Sgt. Jerrod Kester, the 107th Security Forces enlisted manager.

Owczarczak is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

He also works with multiple committees and councils to bolster wing development and morale.

“Master Sgt. Owczarczak is a clear example of what a SNCO should be not only in security forces but our Air Force,” Kester said. “I have witnessed the hard work and dedication he has put in on a daily basis.”

Owczarczak’s awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.

4 from Albion inducted into National Technical Honor Society

Posted 12 March 2021 at 9:55 am

Press Release, Albion Central School

ALBION – Albion’s Charles D’Amico High School is pleased to announce that four of its students have been inducted into Orleans/Niagara BOCES National Technical Honor Society.

Jacob Coolbaugh

The first of the inductees is Jacob Coolbaugh, a senior at the High School. He is in Computer Technology at the Orleans Career & Technical Education Center (OCTEC).

According to Coolbaugh, he is planning on majoring in Cyber Security at Genesee Community College.

“My goal is to be a cybersecurity expert and work at a reliable company,” Coolbaugh said.

In addition to his academic successes, Coolbaugh also competes on Albion’s Swim Team.

Benjamin Hickman

Benjamin Hickman is focusing on Electricity and Electronics at OCTEC. Currently, Hickman’s goal is to head straight into the work-force after graduating this spring.

“My goal is to get and keep a job,” Hickman explained.

On top of his scholastic accomplishments, Benjamin is also a swimmer for Albion in addition to being a trap shooter.

Elijah Lloyd

The third inductee is Elijah Lloyd and is also a senior at Albion High School. Lloyd is focusing on Security and Law Enforcement and plans to attend the University of Buffalo for Computer Engineering once he graduates.

“My goal is to become a State Trooper,” Lloyd said.

Succeeding not just as a student but as an athlete as well, Lloyd also plays on Albion’s basketball team and runs track and field.

Jakob Talbot

Lastly, Jakob Talbot was also inducted into the NTHS. Talbot has been studying Electricity and Electronics at OCTEC and plans to further his education by attending college for electricity wiring or computer programming.

“My goal is to accomplish my future plans,” Talbot stated.

His accomplishments don’t stop there, Talbot was recognized for being on Honor Roll, a member of National Honor Society, and a tri-sport athlete in the Purple Eagle Athletic Program as a member of the track and field, wrestling, and cross country teams.

All four inductees were also recognized for their perfect attendance as well as being members of SkillsUSA, a national organization that provides leadership, teamwork, citizenship, and character development experiences for its students.

Students from Albion, Kendall named to SUNY Morrisville Dean’s List

Staff Reports Posted 11 March 2021 at 9:14 am

MORRISVILLE – SUNY Morrisville recently announced three local students were named to the Dean’s List for the Fall 2020 semester. To be named to the Dean’s List, a student must achieve a 3.0 to 3.99 grade-point average for the semester and complete 12 credit hours.

The local students on the Dean’s List include:

  • Nickkayla Aldrich of Albion, majoring in Individual Studies
  • Nicholas Reed of Albion, majoring in Criminal Justice – BTech
  • Cooper Rowley of Kendall, majoring in Agricultural Business Development – BBA

SUNY Morrisville was ranked among the Best Regional Colleges in the North by U.S. News and World Report Best Colleges 2021 issue and was also recognized in the Top Public Schools, Regional Colleges North in the 2021 Best Colleges rankings.

Students from Orleans named to Dean’s List at Canisius College

Staff Reports Posted 9 March 2021 at 8:04 am

BUFFALO – Canisius College congratulates more than 1,100 students who were named to the fall 2020 Dean’s and Merit lists, including several from Orleans County.

Dean’s List recognitions are awarded to those students who have attained a grade point average of at least 3.50 for the semester and have completed at least four courses of three credits or equivalent.

Merit List recognitions are awarded to students who have attained a grade point average of at least 3.25 for the semester and have completed two courses of three credit hours or the equivalent.

The following students from Orleans were named to either the Dean’s or Merit list for the fall 2020 semester:

  • Brennen Harris of Medina who is pursuing a degree in Journalism and expected to graduate in 2022.
  • Alexis Hinman of Albion who is pursuing a degree in Psychology and expected to graduate in 2022.
  • Makenna Lederhouse of Medina who is pursuing a degree in Integrated Marketing Comm and expected to graduate in 2022.
  • Megan Leight of Albion who is pursuing a degree in Animal Behavior Ecology Conservation and expected to graduate in 2021.
  • Nathan Sherman of Medina who is pursuing a degree in Biochemistry and expected to graduate in 2024.

One of 27 Jesuit universities in the nation, Canisius prepares leaders – intelligent, caring, faithful individuals – able to pursue and promote excellence in their professions, their communities and their service to humanity.

Nate Smith from Albion named to Dean’s List at Grove City College

Staff Reports Posted 17 February 2021 at 7:44 pm

GROVE CITY, PA – Nate Smith from Albion, a junior International Business major at Grove City College, has been named to the Dean’s List for the Fall 2020 semester. Nate is a 2018 graduate of Charles C. Amico High School and is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Bradford Smith (Lisa) from Albion, NY.

Students eligible for the Dean’s List have a GPA of 3.40 to 3.59; for the Dean’s List with Distinction a GPA of 3.60 to 3.84 and for the Dean’s List with High Distinction a GPA of 3.85 to 4.0.

Grove City College is a highly ranked, national Christian liberal arts and sciences college that was established in 1876. Grove City College is a pioneer in independent private education and accepts no federal funds. It offers students degrees in more than 60 majors on a picturesque 180-acre campus north of Pittsburgh, Pa.

Several students from Orleans County named to Dean’s List at RIT

Staff Reports Posted 17 February 2021 at 9:08 am

ROCHESTER – The following local residents made the Dean’s List at Rochester Institute of Technology for the 2020 Fall Semester. Undergraduate students are eligible for Dean’s List if their GPA is greater than or equal to 3.40 for nine credit hours of traditionally graded coursework; they do not have any grades of “Incomplete,” NE, D, or F; and they have registered for, and completed, at least 12 credit hours.

  • Nicholas Bogan of Lyndonville, who is in the chemical engineering program.
  • Jace Conn of Albion, who is in the mechanical engineering program.
  • Flint Dilella of Holley, who is in the motion picture science program.
  • Gillian Gallets of Holley, who is in the industrial design program.
  • William Gregoire of Albion, who is in the mechanical engineering technology program.
  • Noah Heinsler of Waterport, who is in the film and animation program.
  • Toby Kiebala of Medina, who is in the mechanical engineering program.
  • Alex Lane of Holley, who is in the computing security program.
  • Rebecca Powley of Kendall, who is in the echocardiography program.
  • Jessica Smith of Lyndonville, who is in the film and animation program.
  • Elijah Sones of Albion, who is in the business administration-accounting program.
  • Riley Starr of Lyndonville, who is in the mechanical engineering program.

Rochester Institute of Technology is home to leading creators, entrepreneurs, innovators and researchers. Founded in 1829, RIT enrolls about 18,600 students in more than 200 career-oriented and professional programs, making it among the largest private universities in the U.S.

2 Albion Middle School students recognized for leadership, character

Posted 3 February 2021 at 11:34 am

Press Release, Albion Central School

ALBION – Two students from Albion’s Carl I. Bergerson Middle School received the Board of Education’s Character and Leadership awards for the month of February.

Olivia Peterson

In the virtual meeting, Middle School Principal Brad Pritchard presented Olivia Peterson with the Character Award and Joseph Schobelein with the Leadership Award.

“There are often times in life when individuals are faced with adversity and, during these difficult times, how we respond to those moments can often set the course for our future,” Pritchard explained. “Olivia has recently overcome great adversity in her life but her outstanding character shined as she fought through a very difficult situation.”

Described as “resilient,” Pritchard said Peterson “pushed forward each day with a positive attitude and a sense of humor.”

“Olivia’s teachers admired her maturity and focus,” Pritchard continued. “Her ability to pick herself up and push forward was remarkable.”

Joseph Schobelein

Schobelein, an eighth-grader, was the recipient of the Leadership Award because he “models leadership by example.”

“He is always polite, considerate, and he has worked so hard to improve academically and socially over the past 2.5 years,” Pritchard said. “Joe is an extremely hard worker who persists with his tasks until they are mastered.”

In addition to his tremendous work ethic and leadership in the classroom, Schobelein has demonstrated kindness to others.

“When you ask people about Joe, everyone has the same response – Joe makes every day brighter with his humor,” Pritchard said.

Schobeleine is humble, he is modest about his achievements and lives up to our value statements of “Valuing everyone, every day.”

We are proud to recognize Olivia and Joe as leaders, not just in work ethic but in character, in our Albion community.

Dean’s List at FLCC includes student from Medina

Staff Reports Posted 22 January 2021 at 9:01 am

CANANDAIGUA – Finger Lakes Community College announces the Dean’s List for the fall 2020 semester. A total of 474 students earned this honor.

To be eligible for the FLCC fall Dean’s List, full-time students enrolled in a degree or certificate program must earn a grade point average of 3.5 or higher and have completed 12 or more credit hours.

Kaylyn Holman of Medina made the Dean’s List, the only one from Orleans County.

There are three from Genesee County on the Dean’s List: Rose Hubbard and Daniel Jensen of Byron, and Nathan Coy of Pavilion.