Four area school district staff members were presented the 2017 Colin Powell Award by Our Community Salutes-Fort Bend at a recognition event held at Safari Texas Ranch on May 21.
Our Community Salutes-Fort Bend (OCSFB) is a local, nonprofit organization created to recognize and honor graduating high school students (and their parents) who plan to enlist in the armed services after graduation.
Originally organized in 2013, the group has obtained official nonprofit status and, after five years, has increased awareness and support of enlisting graduating seniors.
The Colin Powell Award, named after Gen. Colin Powell, U.S. Army (Ret.), is a public service award that is presented to an outstanding high school guidance counselor, principal, teacher, or other staff member in recognition of providing guidance, counseling and mentoring to students as they assess their accomplishments, talents, and interests, and move forward in their lives.
Candidates for the Colin Powell Award are nominated by area military recruiters. The nominations are reviewed, and a committee of volunteers selects the winner.
This year four winners were selected. Three winners are from Fort Bend ISD: Daphne Thompson-Bennett, College and Career Advisor at Thurgood Marshall High School (nominated by Army Staff Sergeant Roxanne Valdez); Jackie Hidalgo, College and Career Advisor at Hightower High School (nominated by Navy Petty Officer Ryan Songy), and Daniella Chaves, Spanish teacher and assistant girls’ soccer coach, from George Bush High School (nominated by Marine Staff Sergeant Jaime Garibay). The fourth winner, from Lamar Consolidate ISD, is Rebecca Mobley, College and Career Counselor at George Ranch High School (nominated by Air Force Staff Sergeant Denise McHaney).
“Our Military Recruiters could not do their jobs without help and support from the schools,” said Lucy Bremond, chairperson of the Colin Powell Award Selection Committee. “We had a difficult job this year as all the nominees were outstanding as counselors and mentors whose service, compassion, and commitment sets an example for all of us.
We honor these winners because they are educators who understand that it is not about getting a diploma, and it’s not about getting a job. It is about having opportunities for life.”