Cumberland Times-News

Local News

May 1, 2013

Riggleman is Church award winner

KEYSER, W.Va. — Carrie Riggleman, a senior at Keyser High School, was selected as the 2013 winner of the 22nd annual Katharine Church Award during a ceremony on Wednesday at Potomac State College.

Riggleman said being a nominee has been her dream since she attended her first Katharine Church ceremony as a freshman.

“This award is one that any female senior scholar-athlete dreams of having and I am privileged to experience this here tonight,” said Riggleman. “This award is an amazing honor and inspires me to further my success academically and socially.”

Gayle Manchin, wife of U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin and vice president of the state Board of Education, was the speaker for the event.

“As we look from the time that Katharine Church passed away in 2002 her legacy of excellence and determination lives on in this room tonight and that’s what continues to inspire our young women at Keyser High School every year,” said Manchin.

Manchin read Riggleman’s essay “My Greatest Obstacle,” which details a turbulent childhood as well as the essays of runners-up Bridget Dohony and Carly Grady.  Nominees are required to write essays about dealing with obstacles.

“They (essays) really overwhelmed me and touched me in a special way,” said Manchin. “All three of you personified what is so great about Keyser and the state of West Virginia, that you are strong, are rooted in family values and you are committed to serving your community.”

Manchin said the importance of the role that Keyser played in each of their lives came out loud and clear in the essays.

“No matter the loss, the obstacle, the sacrifice each of you has drawn courage and strength that you needed from this community, from your family and your friends,” said Manchin.

Manchin said Robert F. Kennedy frequently remarked that the world demands the qualities of youth; the qualities of imagination and courage and an appetite for adventure.

Riggleman was president of the Mu Alpha Theta, is co-president of the Academic Honor Society from 2012 to present and is a member of the Science National Honor Society. She was a member of the volleyball team from 2009 to 2012 and was co-captain of the team in 2012. She is a member of the softball team and is serving as the team’s co-captain. She was also statistician for the boys’ basketball team in 2010.

Riggleman plans on attending Potomac State College and transferring to Frostburg State University. She hopes to be-come an elementary school teacher.

“The qualities that Mrs. Church demonstrated in her life inspire me to go forward and become a successful educator like herself,” said Riggleman.

Manchin and Riggleman congratulated all three nominees.

Riggleman received a $1,000 scholarship and a plaque. Dohony and Grady both received plaques and $500 scholarships.

The Katharine Church Award was initiated in 1992 by the Keyser Rotary Club because no award existed to recognize outstanding female students similar to the Ed Kelley Award.

The nominees for the award must participate in at least one sport for four years, must have at least a 3.0 grade-point average, be of good character and be active in school and community activities.

Contact Elaine Blaisdell at eblaisdell@times-news.com.

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