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FOBSE awards $80,000 to LPHS seniors

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(Left to Right) Senior Henry Slade stands onstage with Anna Johnson, Kali Quick, and Kirsten King. Slade received the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce Scholarship, the Haas Builders Scholarship, the Mike and Kirsten King Scholarship as well as an anonymous award. PHOTO BY TIM KENT

By Gabrielle Gasser ASSOCIATE EDITOR

BIG SKY – In a touching ceremony filled with laughter and tears, the Friends of Big Sky Education awarded $80,000 in scholarships to Lone Peak High School students during the 2022 FOBSE Scholarship Ceremony at the Warren Miller Performing Arts Center on April 5. 

The eighth annual Community Scholarship Program sponsored by FOBSE awarded 46 scholarships to 17 students. The scholarships are sponsored by a variety of community organizations, local businesses and families. 

FOBSE is a nonprofit entity formed in 2004 with the goal of supporting education in the Big Sky community. As part of its mission, FOBSE fundraised to build Lone Peak High School, aided in starting the Warren Miller Performing Arts Center, and spearheads the scholarship campaign to help fiscally support LPHS seniors in their post-high school endeavors. The organization’s scholarship program has grown significantly since its first year in 2015, when it awarded $30,000 to students. 

The full list of 2022 scholarships and recipients. GRAPHIC BY ME BROWN

Anne Marie Mistretta, VP and secretary of FOSBE praised the applicants in her opening remarks and thanked the sponsors for their contributions that will support the next generation of community leaders. 

“In addition to making your donations, students, you will hear some nuggets of grit, and persistence that helped these sponsors to make it in Big Sky,” she said. “They want to breathe these qualities into you so that you will be successful.”

(Left to Right) Senior Tristen Clack gets a hug from Tim Kent with First Security Bank while Tim Cyr and Cathy Gorman look on. Clack received the First Security Bank Scholarship and the Cyr-Gorman Scholarship for Early Childhood Support. PHOTO COURTESY OF GALLATIN CANYON WOMEN’S CLUB

During the presentations, each student was called up to the podium along with the sponsor or sponsors of their scholarship and they were all preceded by thoughtful anecdotes and mention of their various accolades.

After all the awards were handed out, Mistretta took the podium to offer her closing remarks.

(Left to Right) John Zirkle looks on as King introduces the scholarships and winner. Anne Marie Mistretta stands by senior Samantha Suazo who was presented with the Gallatin Canyon Women’s Club Scholarship by Sheila Krieg and Stacey Chapman. Suazo also received the Glore Family Fund Scholarship. PHOTO BY ANNA JOHNSON

“This message is for seniors,” she said. “Many of you are headed off to other states this year. We wish you success and we want you to come back and tell us all about what you’ve learned and about yourselves.”

To round out the ceremony, Superintendent Dustin Shipman took the microphone to offer many thanks to Mistretta calling her the “champion” of the scholarship program. This ceremony is Mistretta’s last as both she and her husband Jerry have resigned from the FOBSE board.

(Left to Right) Zirkle and King look on as Mistretta introduces senior Luke Kirchmayr who stands onstage to receive the Richard “Dick” Allgood Memorial Scholarship and the Mark Robin Scholarship for Creative Writing from presenters Jeremy Harder and Barbara Rowley. PHOTO BY ANNA JOHNSON

After asking the gathered seniors to give standing ovations to Mistretta, the donors and their parents, Shipman made one last request of the seniors.

“So go out there, take the monies that this community has raised for you, use it wisely, use it to change the world and use it to always remember where you came from,” he said. “Congratulations.”

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