Optimist Club announces winners of essay contest


The Del Mar-Solana Beach Optimist Club conducted its annual Essay Contest based on the organization’s theme for 2022-2023, “Who is an Everyday Hero that Brings Out the Optimism in You?”.

A panel of three judges evaluated the local students’ essays using strict Optimist International rules to determine the winners. First, second, and third place winners will receive cash prizes, medallions, and certificates for their accomplishments.

Rami Kabakibi
Rami Kabakibi
(Copyright of Rami Kabakibi)

First place went to Rami Kabakibi, a student at Torrey Pines High School. Rami will be awarded a check for $250, gold medallion, and certificate. Rami’s essay advanced to the District contest for a chance at even greater prizes, including a college scholarship.

Tess Pollack
Tess Pollack
(Copyright of Tess Pollack)

Second place went to Tess Pollack, a student at Paul Ecke Central Elementary School. Tess will be awarded a check for $150, silver medallion, and certificate.

Sienna McMorran
Sienna McMorran
(Copyright of Sienna McMorran)

Third place went to Sienna McMorran, a student at Paul Ecke Central Elementary School. Sienna will be awarded a check for $100, bronze medallion, and certificate.

“These students all did a wonderful job of articulating this year’s theme among some tough competition. They expressed themselves well through the essay and deserve the honors they received,” Essay Contest Chairperson Janis LaVigne said in a news release. These Essay Contest winners have been invited to read their essays at the club’s evening Zoom meeting at 6 p.m. on Tuesday March 21. The meeting is open to the public and can be joined using the following Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/3859025629 .

The Optimist Club of Del Mar – Solana Beach, CA has been participating in the Optimist Essay Contest for many years and has been active in the community since 1981. Other programs and service projects that the club is involved with include the Optimist Oratorical Contest, Miracle League of San Diego, Junior Optimist Clubs, Scouts, Children’s Challenge Awards, Casa de Amistad, Ronald McDonald House, Rady Children’s Hospital, Community Resource Center, and High School Scholarship programs. For more information about the Del Mar-Solana Beach Optimist Club and the community programs it supports contact Club President Joe Kellejian at joekellejian@yahoo.com or Club Secretary Jim Parrotte at jimparrotte@hotmail.com.

Optimist International is one of the world’s largest service club organizations with 60,000 adult and youth members in 2,000 clubs in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, Mexico, and throughout the world. Carrying the mission statement “By providing hope and positive vision, Optimists bring out the best in youth, our communities, and ourselves.” Optimists conduct positive service projects that reach more than six million young people each year. To learn more about the Optimist International organization, call (314) 371-6000 or visit the organization’s website at www.optimist.org.