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Aaron Hall 2018 Speakers Contest winner - photo by Gina Clugston

Aaron Hall Wins North Fork Lions Club Speakers Contest

NORTH FORK – The North Fork Lions Club Speakers Contest was held last night at the Scout Building, with Aaron Hall taking top honors.

Five speakers participated in the 81st annual competition, speaking on the topic, “Integrity and Civility Play What Role in Today’s Society?”

Each student is allotted 10 minutes for their presentation, and are judged on the their content, delivery and the overall effectiveness of their speech.

Aaron Hall, whose brother Grant won the competition in 2015, is a junior at Minarets High School. He plays baseball, participates in cross-country, and is active in Key Club and several other school organizations.

Other speakers in this year’s competition included:

Lions Club Speakers Contest 2018 participants Aaron Hall, Caleb Lynch, Baley Williamson, Kate Hough, Justin Hough

Caleb Lynch, 16, is a junior at Chawanakee Academy, and competed again this year in the Academic Decathlon. He plays football and classical guitar, and participates in numerous other campus organizations.

Justin Hough, 18, is a senior at Minarets High School. Along with playing baseball and football, Justin participates in all the clubs he can fit into his busy schedule.

Kate Hough, 16, is a sophomore at Minarets. She also participates in a variety of clubs, and is active in Volleyball and Cheer.

Baley Williamson, 17, is a senior at Minarets. She just moved to the area from Arkansas this year and is very glad to be a part of the community and the school.

Jon Norby, local chairman for the Speakers Contest for over 30 years, presented Hall with a $100 check for his win, with $25 going to each of the other speakers.

The purpose of the Speakers Contest is:

  • To provide an opportunity for competitive public speaking among students on a subject of vital interest to the contestants and to the American people as a whole.
  • To stimulate self-expression and independent thinking.
  • To present to the public through the student speakers contests the problems surrounding the maintenance of this commonwealth as a free nation.
  • To consider the means at our disposal of meeting the present and future world problems.

This year’s faculty coaches were Becky Cairns, teacher at Chawanakee Academy and mother of 2013 winner Breanna; and Jessica Sweet, Ag. teacher at Minarets High School. The contest was judged by Tom Wheeler, Vernon Tallmon, Joanne Brown, and Gina Clugston.

North Fork Lions Club president Kenny Goodwin participated as a student in this contest many years ago, and knows that public speaking takes a fair bit of courage.

“I did this in a group just like this one, and it was frightening,” said Goodwin. ” You really have to admire all five of these students.”

Aaron Hall receives $100 check from Jon Norby

Hall will now move on to the Zone Contest which will be held in Oakhurst on Mar. 10 at the Oakhurst Branch Library. Winners from the Zone Contests move on to Region, followed by District, Area, and then the Finals in early June, exact dates and locations to be announced.

The Student Speaker Foundation is a California nonprofit corporation administered by a board of directors and 15 trustees. The purpose of the Foundation is to provide scholarships to augment the prizes awarded to the winners of the California Multiple District Four Student Speakers Program.

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