Youth and Educator Awards
Nominations for the 2019 Keep Texas Beautiful Awards recognize the efforts made by youth and educators working to improve and beautify their communities. First-place winners in each category are recognized at the annual KTB Conference, receiving a cash prize and award.
Congrats to our 2019 Youth & Educator Awards Winners.
Ruthe Jackson Awards:
Youth Individual: Soham Datar, Baytown
Soham is Valedictorian of his graduating class and the first ever high school student board member of Keep Baytown Beautiful. One of his many accomplishments was to help transform the Baytown Trash-Off to "Talking Trash," which saw a 15% increase in involvement due to his marketing expertise. He has truly activated the youth in the community, as well as with Keep Baytown Beautiful. The city of Baytown will sure miss his creativity and community engagement as he heads off to Harvard this fall.
Youth Organization: Weslaco High School Family Career and Community Leaders of America
These Welsaco High School students have been on a three year journey to clean and beautify one of the oldest parks in Weslaco. The students were able to raise over $100,000 for improvements to Gibson Park, which was used toward clean up supplies, designing and painting a mural, installing a walking track, new generational swings, and so much more. The number of hours donated by the students is in the thousands. The park has been brought back to life and the community is living outdoors once again.
Sadie Ray Graff Awards:
Educator: Amber Bermudez, Grand Prairie
Amber Bermudez is a teacher at South Grand Prairie High School where she has been encouraging students to improve their community for the past eleven years. Not only was she awarded teacher of year in 2019, but she also worked alongside her students to help the school become the third Keep America Beautiful School in the nation. Her students also maintain two streets through the Adopt-a-Street program and participate in the Grand Prairie Litter Team. Simply stated, Ms. Bermudez is a great resource for education and activism for our students.
Educational Institution: Alvin Independent School District
This past year, Alvin ISD implemented "The Day" community service project, which brought together 31 schools and 26,000 students to work on over 280 service projects across the city. These projects included yard work, painting a daycare, mulching at parks, litter pickups along roads and so much more. Through "The Day", Alvin ISD is hoping to instill a heart to serve in the next generation. "The Day" is already scheduled for September 2019.
Read more about last year's winners on our blog.
Recognizing the efforts and leadership of youth (as individuals and their collective efforts as a group or team) and youth-oriented organizations to beautify the community and create cleaner, greener campuses, parks and neighborhoods.
- Youth Individual is defined as a student, scout, youth advisory board member, etc.
- Youth Organization is defined as a scout group, student-led organization, youth advisory board, etc.
Recognizing the efforts of educators and educational institutions that provide instruction/programming to Pre K-college students to encourage youth involvement and promote the KTB mission through environmental education.
- Educator is defined as a formal or informal instructor, school staff, volunteer, etc.
- Educational Institution is defined as a school, non-profit providing educational programming, school district, off-campus club, etc.
- Background/History: Provide a brief history or background of the nominee as it pertains to the application. (10 points, 300 words maximum)
- Leadership: Explain how the nominee’s leadership efforts impacted the success of a project or program. (20 points, 300 words maximum)
- Impact: List how activities improved, beautified and preserved the visual aspects of your community, helped to positively change people's attitudes and behaviors, or minimized the impact of waste and promoted responsible waste handling. Add any statistical information, if applicable. (20 points, 300 words maximum)
- Innovation: Describe unique and/or creative ways the nominee went above and beyond the call of duty. (20 points, 300 words maximum)
- KTB Mission: Describe how the nominee supports the KTB mission, “to inspire and empower Texans to keep our communities clean and beautiful.” (20 points, 300 words maximum)
- Supplemental Materials: Used to substantiate the responses in your written summary. Upload 2-5 items, such as letters of support, pictures from events, flyers promoting an event, scanned page of a notebook, etc. (10 points)
Each entry must include a $15 nomination fee in the form of check or credit card. Credit card payments should be submitted through the online awards system; make checks payable to Keep Texas Beautiful. A maximum of 5 nominations is allowed per category.
Awards Announcement & Presentation
Award winners will be posted on the KTB website (www.ktb.org) and recognized at the annual Keep Texas Beautiful Conference held June 18-20 in Rockwall, Texas.