Distinctive young women honored at luncheon | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Distinctive young women honored at luncheon

Annie Flanzraich
Annie Flanzraich / Tahoe Daily Tribune

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – The four South Tahoe High School students named as Young Women of Distiniction by the Soroptimist International of South Lake Tahoe are multi-facted, talented and out to change the world.

At the group’s Wednesday luncheon the girls were honored for their accomplishments and encouraged to continue pursuing their passions.

“These extraordinary women truely deserve this recognition,” said STHS Principal Ivone Larson, who introduced each award recipient to the group.

A budding photographer, this STHS senior became the resident portrait photographer for her fellow seniors this year.

“And the pictures are amazing,” Larson said.

Zepada plans to attend a community college in San Diego in the fall and hopes to transfer to San Diego State University. Her favorite class is chemistry, Larson said. Zepeda also enjoys dancing, participating in martial arts, playing soccer and baseball and even playing video games.

She has also earned two certificates in Culinary Arts from STHS Career Technical Education program.

This past summer Zepeda also participated in an internship program with the U.S. Forest Service through the Generation Green Club. She did trail work, camp restoration and learned about fires in the basin.

About to graduate with 12 varsity letters, STHS senior Holmes is also a member of the National Honor Society and maintains a 4.19 grade point average.

She also volunteers at St. Theresa’s as a choir member and bakes cookies with Helping Hands.

In addition, she has played French horn for the South Tahoe High School Advanced Wind ensemble for the past four years and received the Outstanding Musician Award last year.

She made the Nevada State All-Academic team seven times, and was captain of the girls’ varsity golf team for the past 2 years.

She hopes to attend Seattle Pacific or Occidental College in Los Angeles after graduation.

Her future plans include writing screen plays or novels that will change our culture’s current fascination with violence and negative social images, Larson said.

“In a perfect world, she would love to live in Tahoe, write screen plays for Hollywood, and be a pro-golfer,” Larson said.

At the luncheon, Holmes thanked her family for their support.

“I’d like to thank all these people for getting me through high school, which is a feat in itself,” she said.

Kaufer had a life changing experience when she visited to South Africa.

“I saw the most elegant and beautiful mansions on one street and literally a street over were tin-roofed shanty towns, with plywood walls and no doors,” Kaufer said. “It sickened me to see the contrast of the people’s lives.”

She hopes to attend Sonoma State University and major in journalism and mass communication. She then hopes to travel the world writing about political and environmental issues.

In addition to travelling, Kaufer also likes to play volleyball, piano, paint, write and eat cookies – she said her favorite good group is sugar.

“I am amazed and inspired because I see a group of strong a powerful women,” Kaufer said at the luncheon. “It feel so amazing to be honored with such a prestigious award.”

Kushner’s accomplishments include playing bass guitar on youth worship team, percussion, piano, and acting as the lead in the musical “White Christmas” in December. She is on the varsity dance team, and plays tennis. Her community service includes a 10-day annual mission trip to the Navajo Nation with Sierra Community Church to build homes.

She procures school supplies for underprivileged kids, sings at Kiwanis, Soroptimist, Cancer League, Rotary, Optimist, retirement homes, and air shows with Blue Ribbon Choir, is a dance teacher’s aid, and babysits at church.

At STHS she is the Senior Class President, and in her freshman, sophomore, and junior years served on the ASB Council. She is in S-Club, National Honor Society, and Key Club, and maintains a 4.29 grade point average.

Kushner has experienced many opportunities including attending the National Youth Leadership Forum on Medicine, a 10- day program at UC Berkeley that gives students a chance to explore the medical field by attending lectures, watching a live surgery, and visiting a college medical lab.

She has not yet finalized her career plans.

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