Behind the scenes at Sierra News Online today you’ll find three grinning mamas, all equally proud of our bold, brilliant and beautiful daughters (not that we’re biased in every way) who are all stepping forth into a bright future following a trio of graduations this month. Holly Burrows is the daughter of sales and marketing manager Lisa Clark, Clara Briley is the daughter of managing editor Kellie Flanagan, and Grace DeMasters is the daughter of owner, publisher and editor-in-chief of SNO, Gina Clugston. For these young women, we take the opportunity to offer this tribute from the bottom of our motherly hearts.
We stand at the doorway before this rite of passage as we celebrate a special young lady’s successes and determination. We look toward a horizon filled with promise. This day comes after a difficult relocation, much hard work, and fortitude for success with the focus of a high achiever. Holly has accomplished much in the short time she has been at Minarets High School. Through her camera lens she tackled football and the home runs of baseball with the ease of a seasoned photographer. With the spirit of a team player and the competitive drive to win, she successfully ran track in the school’s inaugural program gracing ribbons around her neck. Holly dug in and focused on academics making Minarets’ Honor Roll and just last week she was awarded a scholarship to further her education in business finance from the North Fork Chamber of Commerce. Our little joyful child takes her first steps today – not as toddler, but as woman who will walk in the class of 2016 and mold the future in her capable established hands. We are tearfully proud – go Mustangs! — Lisa Clark
Early on in life she earned the nickname Clara the Conqueror, and that’s how we’ve always thought of her. Graduating next week with friends she will cherish forever from Yosemite High School, Clara is heading off in September to study bio chem in the science and math department at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. She’s had a great run at YHS thanks to all those students, family, teachers and community and staff who’ve supported her every single day. Beyond her academic accomplishments Clara is in essence a bright and delightful spirit who is always singing, a fierce and faithful friend, a compassionate creature who travels the earth with ease and joy, and a beloved daughter. Congratulations on your Badgerous graduation and to all the members of the Class of 2016! — Kellie Flanagan
My baby girl Grace, (okay, not so much any more) has graduated from the Milan Institute! She graduated from Yosemite High School in 2012, and after working hard to arrange the financial challenges so she could attend Milan, Grace continued working at the Tenaya Lodge on days when she wasn’t driving down to Fresno to attend classes. She clocked out of school for the very last time on Wednesday, May 25, and passed her state boards in Sacramento on May 31. I am so proud of her! She loves what she does and will now start building up a clientele while working at a salon in Oakhurst, and continuing her gig at the Tenaya. Congratulations Gracie-Face! — Gina Clugston