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Published by y.bub, 2021-03-01 22:13:30

Jacksonville SOY 2021

SOY

FRIDAY, MARCH 5TH, 2021



THE LEUKEMIA & LYMPHOMA SOCIETY
PRESENTS STUDENTS OF THE YEAR.

The Students of the Year campaign consists of a select
group of individuals, from different locations and walks of
life, coming together for a greater purpose: curing cancer.

Candidates in this philanthropic competition form
powerful fundraising teams to help them find innovative
ways of fueling The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s (LLS)
goal to end blood cancer. With their teammates behind
them, this exceptional group competes in honor of two
local blood cancer survivors for the prestigious title of
Students of the Year.

We are one family. Connected by blood.
Driven to find cures.

THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS

WELCOME

TO THE LEUKEMIA & LYMPHOMA SOCIETY’S

2021 STUDENTS OF THE YEAR

Good Evening,

On behalf of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), welcome to
the Grand Finale of the Jacksonville Chapter’s Students of the Year
campaign. There is no doubt that this year’s campaign has felt a little
bit different than in years past. For that reason, I am beyond thrilled to
congratulate each candidate and team member on their fundraising
efforts, and feel privileged to celebrate such a dedicated group of
people raising funds on behalf of our patients.

The Students of the Year campaign has grown tremendously through
the efforts of an amazing leadership team. I thank each and every one
of you for your hard work and dedication in helping us reach great
success. Our volunteers share a connection to the mission of LLS
and contribute to the important work of our organization. We are so
grateful to our new and longstanding volunteers for their support.

This evening, you will have the opportunity to meet some of our
volunteers and our Honored Hero– Destiny. Each candidate has
participated in the campaign in honor of Destiny, and tonight, we pay
tribute to her, as well as all those touched by blood cancers. Destiny,
along with all of our patients, give us reason to never give up in our
pursuit of finding cures for blood cancers. The Leukemia & Lymphoma
Society has helped millions impacted by cancer through our more
than 70 year history, funding breakthrough research to advance
lifesaving treatments and cures, and providing support and advocacy
for patients. With our investment of nearly $1.3 Billion in research since
we started in 1949, we are leaders in advancing breakthroughs in
immunotherapy, genomics, and personalized medicine. More than 70
years of fighting blood cancers has led us to a game-changing belief:
Beating Cancer is in Our Blood.

Thank you for joining the battle. Best of luck to all of our 2021
candidates!

Sincerely,
Melanie Johnson
Executive Director, North Florida

LEADERSHIP TEAM

Our 2021 Leadership Team is made up of an extraordinary
group of community and business leaders committed to making
an impact on the LLS Mission. Together this team nominated
a dynamic class of candidates who are well connected in their
communities and relentless in their efforts to raise funds to find
cures for blood cancers. Thank you!

LEADERSHIP TEAM CHAIR
Dr. Julie Pantano

LEADERSHIP TEAM MEMBERS

Brooke Forte

Alyssa Kowlton

Erna Mrkaljevic

Eric Turner

Yashika Vadlamani

Anne Warren

2022 STUDENTS OF THE YEAR
NOMINATIONS NOW OPEN

Looking to get involved with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society?
Do you think you know the next Student of the Year?
Join our Nominating Leadership Team!

REGION BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Paul Anderson Dr. Raymond Mailhot
Rebecca Arends Yvette Tremonti, CPA, MBA
Anthony Brooks
Ralph Cigliano Timothy Kubal MD, MBA
Elizabeth Dvorak Barbara Morgan
Jason Fields, MD Joseph Morse
Cody O’Neal
Chris Garcia
Sheldon Gibbs, PE Maria Ramos-Person
Bernard Schmidt
Shelly Glenn Robert Slavkin
Ryan Hicks Joel Smith
Rose Huro Phyllis Timmons
Tyler Iller Edward Vance
Alexis Jackson Jenny Vipperman
Christopher Jenkins Ahmed Zakari
James E. Kirkpatrick

MEET OUR HONORED HERO

Destiny

Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Destiny was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia in the third
grade, after experiencing headaches, nausea, and a change in
energy. Destiny and her family spent close to a year in the hospital,
enduring round after round of chemotherapy and a bone marrow
transplant. Destiny is now in remission and currently in middle
school. She enjoys painting, drawing, and loves stuffed animals!
Destiny is the epitome of brave!

MEET OUR HONORED HERO

The Heart of your Healthcare

Serving Northeast Florida for over 19 years

Cardiovascular Medicine Vascular & Endovascular Medicine

Interventional Cardiology Sleep Medicine

Electrophysiology Pulmonology

Nuclear Cardiology Wound Management
Echocardiography Amputation Prevention

www.firstcoastcardio.com | 904.493.3333

$5K Club Members

The 5K Club is a group of exemplary team members who raise
$5,000 or more for their candidate teams during the 7-week
competition. 5K Club members greatly advance their team’s
progress towards their goal and demonstrate how all participants
can make a significant impact.

Anna Marie Vohs

Team LLS Life Savers



2021 Students of the Year

Candidates

Team Bears Against
Blood Cancer

Taylor Schultz

Bartram Trail High School
Taylor is a Junior at Bartram Trail High School and a co-candidate on
team Bears Against Blood Cancer. Throughout the campaign Taylor
worked diligently to spread the word and raise funds for LLS. Taylor is
running in honor of every one that has battled cancer, with the hope of
finding a cure.

Team Bears Against
Blood Cancer

Jack Willis

Bartram Trail High School
Jack is a junior in high school who joined Students of the Year in honor of
those who lost their battle with blood cancer, including his grandpa. He
enjoys playing tennis and being outdoors kayaking, fishing, and hiking.
Throughout the campaign, he worked with his team to secure personal
asks and donations through various fundraisers.

$75 MILLION

Funds raised in the SOY campaign’s 7-year history

Team Bring
The Hope

Wednesday Pennington

The Broach School
Wednesday is a senior at the Broach School and the candidate for Team
Bring the Hope. Wednesday enjoys volunteering at the Jacksonville Zoo
and has a passion for curing cancer. She is running for Students of the
Year in honor of her oldest brother.

Team
Dream Workers

Kamalika Kummathi

Allen D. Nease High School
Kamalika, junior at Nease High School, became a part of LLS to
help find a cure. As she will be a life long member, she is excited
to see how far LLS will go with the efforts of many people.

2021 Students of the Year

Candidates

Team
Dream Workers

Sudiksha Vanaparthi

Allen D. Nease High School
Sudiksha is a junior at Nease High school, who is eager to help
find a cure and help the society. Through various means, she had
fundraised for the cause. Sudiksha is participating in the campaign
in honor of cancer patients and hopes that her contribution will help
them.

Team Drew’s Crew

Peyton Crevasse

Allen D. Nease High School
Peyton is a student at Nease High School and a co-candidate on
team Drew’s Crew. She competes on the varsity track and soccer
team. Peyton has a passion for science and medicine. She joined
the Students of the Year Campaign in honor of her cousin Drew, a
leukemia survivor.

Team Drew’s Crew

Vidhisha Gautam

Allen D. Nease High School
Vidhisha, a junior at Allen D. Nease has had a passion for medicine
from a young age. She uses this passion as an outlet to strive
towards this goal of fundraising to support a future immune
to cancer. Vidhisha is running in this campaign in honor of everyone
who has been impacted by this dreadful disease. 

Team Drew’s Crew

Ivory Sekamanzi

Allen D. Nease High School
Ivory is a charismatic and intelligent junior at Nease High School.
As an IB Student, her hard work and passionate attitude has
directly translated into this campaign. With her co-candidates, she
raised funds through fundraising events and philanthropic efforts.
Ivory is participating in this campaign in honor of Drew Crevasse
and all of the people whose families and lives have been affected
by cancer.

Every 3 minutes someone in the
United States is diagnosed with blood cancer.

22002201 SMtuadne&ntWs oofmthaen Yoef athr e Year

CCaannddiiddaatteess

Team Jax
Zoo Rangers

Jacob Darr

Sandalwood High School
Jacob is so engaged in his campaign trying to find a cure. His enthusiasm
stems from his chronic disability- diabetes. Through the Students of the
Year Campaign he raised funds through personal connections with his
school, workplace, and friends. Jacob is participating in this campaign in
honor of everyone who may not have the energy to do so and for those
who do not know how.

Team Jax
Zoo Rangers

Bridget Swartz

Stanton College Preparatory High School
Bridget is a high school senior who loves animals and volunteering in the
community. She found this program through the Zoo and fell in love with
the idea of being able to actively participate in helping make people’s
lives better and easier. She finds that it is a true pleasure to be a part of
such an amazing campaign!

$75 MILLION

Funds raised in the SOY campaign’s 7-year history

Team K.O.

Nathan Ream

Duval Charter School at Baymeadows
Nathan is a big giver. Whenever someone is in need of help,
he tries to help them immediately. As the Students of the Year
campaign ran, Nathan collaborated with his team on their progress
and encouraged them throughout. He is running in honor of
everyone who is battling their fight today.

Team
Kickin’ Cancer

Humna Ahmed

Allen D. Nease High School
Humna is a junior at Nease High School with Team Kickin’ Cancer.
She joined LLS in honor of her best friend’s sister who lost her life
to leukemia. Her story inspired her to help fundraise through the
Student’s of the Year Campaign and help others suffering with
leukemia and blood cancer. Through the campaign, she worked
with her peers and fellow teammates to further initiate a plan to
both help and honor people who battled cancer.

2021 Students of the Year

Candidates

Team
Kickin’ Cancer

Siri Jonnalagadda

Allen D. Nease High School
Siri is a junior at Nease High School and a part of Team Kickin Cancer.
She is so grateful to have been given the opportunity to be a part of
LLS and raise funds for this amazing cause. Through the Students of
the Year campaign, she has worked with her team and school to raise
funds and spread awareness. Siri is participating in this campaign in
honor of young children who are fighting blood cancer.  

Team
Kickin’ Cancer

Aarushi Sinha

The Bolles School
Aarushi is currently a junior at The Bolles School and a co-candidate
for Team Kickin’ Cancer. Her passions include taekwondo and
art. A friend’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer and her
determination inspired Aarushi to do her part. Aarushi always strives
to make a difference in the community and this role has given her the
opportunity to help people on a much larger scale.

Team LLS
Life Savers

Sofia Caron

The Bolles School

Sofia is extremely passionate about using her resources to help
others. Throughout the Students of the Year Campaign she raised
funds through contacting close family members, friends, and
companies. She has dedicated these past few months to raising
funds for her team. Sofia chose to participate in this campaign
because her grandfather passed away due to a form of leukemia
and she wants to help others as much as she can.

Team LLS
Life Savers

Catherine Kunz

The Bolles School

Catherine is honored and beyond excited to be part of the cure.
Through Students of the Year she has raised funds through
extensive efforts in reaching out to generous family, friends and
mentors. Catherine is participating in this campaign in honor of
her family friend, Wayne Cordero, who recently passed away from
leukemia. In addition, she aims to inspire all who have lost loved
ones and those who are fighting today, in an effort to put an end
to the cyclical heartbreak of cancer.

Every 3 minutes someone in the
United States is diagnosed with blood cancer.

22002201 SMtuadne&ntWs oofmthaen Yoef athr e Year

CCaannddiiddaatteess

Team LLS
Life Savers

Sophia Mitchell

The Bolles School
Sophia is a senior at The Bolles School and an athlete on her school’s
varsity soccer and cross-country teams. She is so excited and grateful to
be a part of the Students of the Year Campaign this year. She has raised
funds through personalized emails and sponsorships. She is so proud
of everyone on their team for their dedication to this campaign and how
much of an impact they are all making. Sophia is participating in this
campaign in honor of her grandpa who passed away from Leukemia
before she was born, as well has those still fighting their battle with
cancer.

Team Panthers
Against Cancer

Leilani Feliz

Allen D. Nease High School
Leilani is a junior at Nease High school who loves to get involved in
service extracurriculars, especially those that present a challenge. Leilani
chose to run in this campaign in honor of everyone who has lost their
battle against cancer and for everyone who is still fighting today.

$75 MILLION

Funds raised in the SOY campaign’s 7-year history

Team Panthers
Against Cancer

Lana Ong

Allen D. Nease High School
Lana is a junior at Nease High School and is a candidate for the
team Panthers Against Cancer. Although she hasn’t been directly
affected by cancer, she is in awe of those who have fought and
continue to fight. Lana is participating in the Students of the Year
Campaign in honor of the refugee children she worked with who
were diagnosed with leukemia and lymphoma and moved her with
their incredible strength. She hopes to make as big of an impact as
possible and aid everyone that cancer has affected. 

Team Panthers
Against Cancer

Tejashwini Ramesh

Allen D. Nease High School
Tejas is a senior at Nease High School. She enjoys throwing
events in track and field, as well as reading. Tejas is participating
in this campaign in honor of her great-grandparents and everyone
who has lost her battle with cancer. She aims to take big steps
forward in the collective goal to make her generation the last
generation of cancer.

2021 Students of the Year

Candidates

Team Periwinkles

Karissa Pudder

Pedro Menendez High School
Karissa is a senior at Pedro Menendez high School and is fighting
alongside her partner in crime, Simone, to beat cancer. She has
raised funds by helping organize an art gala in her community. Karissa
is running in this campaign in honor of family members currently
battling cancer, as well as those fighting cancer and their loved ones
supporting them every step of the way.

Team Periwinkles

Simone Endress

Pedro Menendez High School
Simone is enchanted by a narrative. She is a believer in the telling of
stories that shape the human experience and unite us. Through the
Student of the Year campaign, she raised funds in the organization
of an art gala to honor all those whose stories have been affected by
cancer. Simone is currently in 12th grade at Pedro Menendez High
School, and she is deeply grateful for the opportunity to work with the
Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and unite with those in search of a
cure

Team Project Cure

Emily Wilson

Bishop Kenny High School
Emily is a sophomore at Bishop Kenny High School. Five years ago,
she experienced what it meant to be a family member of a cancer
patient as her mom endured chemotherapy. She is passionate
about LLS so that other families can have support and, hopefully,
find a cure to all blood cancers.

Team The CURE

Isabella Laos

Bishop Kenny High School
Isabella is a student at Bishop Kenny High school that is running
for Students of the Year in honor of Mrs. Giordano. “She was one
of the best math teachers I’ve ever had and I want to make sure
people like her win the fight against cancer.” said Isabella.

Every 3 minutes someone in the
United States is diagnosed with blood cancer.

22002201 SMtuadne&ntWs oofmthaen Yoef athr e Year

CCaannddiiddaatteess

Team The
CUREsaders

Lacey Cataleta

Pedro Menendez High School
Lacey is almost as enthusiastic about theatre as she is about finding
a cure. Through the Students of the Year Campaign she raised funds
through personal asks and corporate involvement. Lacey is participating
in this campaign in honor of her classmates who have lost their battle
with cancer, and for students still fighting the battle everyday!

Team The
CUREsaders

Diana Ramos

Pedro Menendez High School
Diana is a junior at Pedro Menendez High School. She is a co-candidate
for team The CUREsaders and is running for Students of the Year in
honor of children around the world battling blood cancer.

$75 MILLION

Funds raised in the SOY campaign’s 7-year history

Team The Dudes

Alan Michael

Allen D. Nease High School
Alan is a senior at Nease High School. Through his passion for
computer science, he is very passionate about how modern
technology can revolutionize fields like healthcare. During this
year’s Student of the Year Campaign, Alan raised funds through
personal asks in his community and gaining auction items. Alan is
participating in this year’s campaign in honor of his uncle who is
currently battling cancer and for everyone who is struggling with it
every day.

Team The Dudes

Joshua Pantano

Allen D. Nease High School
Joshua is a senior at Allen D. Nease High School and a student of
the International Baccalaureate program. He hopes that his efforts
in the Students of the Year Campaign help to find a cure and assist
families in need of support.

2021 Students of the Year

Candidates

Team The
Fighting Force

Arnav Ajay Jadav

Allen D. Nease High School

Arnav is an 11th grade student attending Allen D. Nease High School
in Ponte Vedra, Fl. He is determined to help those who are suffering
from leukemia and lymphoma, and the scientists working tirelessly to
search for a cure. Through Students of the Year North Florida, Arnav
co-led a team of 14 driven individuals in raising a large sum of money,
benefitting both the diligent scientists working to find a cure and the
victims of the malignant cancers. He dedicates this campaign, and the
benevolence of the donors, to both the scientists working behind the
scenes and to the strong individuals fighting leukemia worldwide.

Team The
Fighting Force

Rishi Patel

Allen D. Nease High School
Rishi is an 11th-grade student who attends Allen D. Nease High
School. He is truly determined to help find a cure for cancer. Through
the Students of the Year Campaign, he and his team were able to help
support the fight against cancer. Rishi used this campaign as a way for
him to help fund cancer research, so people do not have to endure
the hardships and struggles of cancer. He is dedicating his campaign
to those who have lost their battle with cancer, and to those who are
currently battling cancer.



SUPPORTERS CIRCLE



EVENT HOST

Lena Pringle

Anchor & Reporter, WJXT Channel 4
Lena Pringle is an award winning journalist covering news,
sports, and entertainment. Telling people’s stories is her passion.
Lena is currently an anchor and reporter for the WJXT Channel
4 in Jacksonville, Florida. This will be her second year hosting
Jacksonville’s Student’s of the Year Grand Finale!



CONGRATULATIONS TO 2020 WINNERS

2020 Students of the Year

Team 4Change

Kate Hastings & Sophie Monahan

The Bolles School



BEATING CANCER IS IN OUR BLOOD.


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