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Twenty Under 20 Class of 2020 chosen

WARREN — Twenty of the most impressive young leaders in Trumbull County have been selected for the 2020 Class of Twenty Under 20.

Now in its eighth year, the program, co-sponsored by the Tribune Chronicle, Akron Children’s Hospital Mahoning Valley and Kent State University at Trumbull, honors 20 high-achieving individuals younger than 20 for their leadership skills through volunteerism, extracurricular activities and academic achievements.

Sue Shafer, community event coordinator for the Tribune Chronicle, said although no award dinner will be held this year because of the pandemic, the students will be featured in a special magazine in early December and will be honored in a virtual program.

“These students, despite a global pandemic that resulted in their in-person classes being canceled in the spring and who are still dealing with the effects of the coronavirus, persevered and rose above the challenges. They are prepared to be our future leaders and we are pleased to honor them,” Shafer said.

The students, whose volunteer activities run the gamut from the Animal Welfare League to Inspiring Minds, were chosen from more than 40 nominations and were nominated by parents, teachers, club advisers and school guidance counselors. Many of them have 4.0 grade point averages and are on track to graduate at the top of their classes.

The winners were selected based on a calculation of 50 percent leadership and 25 percent each academic achievement and extracurricular activities. The top five winners will be selected to split $1,000 to be donated to the local charity of their choice. One overall winner will be picked from among the five. Those winners will be announced during the virtual program.

The Class of 2020 has 19 seniors and one college freshman. In addition, there are 15 girls and five boys, and no repeat winners from last year.

This year’s winners are:

• Miranda Bugos, 17, a senior at Niles McKinley;

• Najah Elam, 17, a senior at Warren G. Harding;

• Lauren Fife, 18, a senior at Champion;

• Brooke Frazzini, 17, a senior at Mathews

• Mallory Greenamyer, 17, a senior at Hubbard;

• Chloe Harris, 17, a senior at Warren G. Harding;

• Jeffrey Jiang, 17, a senior at Lakeview;

• Justin Jones, 19, a freshman at Case Western Reserve University;

• Kate Li, 17, a senior at Howland;

• Gabrielle LoCastro, 17, a senior at Girard;

• Gianna Merlo, 17, a senior at Howland;

• Brooklyn Mullenax, 17, a senior at Bristol;

• Emma O’Connell, 18, a senior at McDonald;

• Riana Rathburn, 17, a senior at Maplewood;

• Zachary Scher, 17, a senior at Champion;

• Jacob Snelson, 17, a senior at Howland;

• Sydney Tenney, 17, a senior at Harding;

• Carla Thigpen, 17, a senior at Niles McKinley;

• Destinee Toth, 17, a senior at Harding;

• Matthew Vencel, 17, a senior at Harding.

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