This year’s Wilbur Awards for Youth Leadership were presented to two outstanding young women of our community: Kaitlyn Oliver and Sarah Jane Paddock

Kaitlyn is a Senior at Arkansas High school, an outstanding scholar and school leader. Kaitilyn is an active participant of the Interact Club which is a community service-based club on the Arkansas High campus that allows students to learn the importance of giving back to your community. She has participated in a large number of service projects with hundreds of hours of community service, including helping with Special Olympics events. Kaitlyn is also very involved in Student Council where she currently serves as the secretary. She has helped organize sessions at the Arkansas State Student Council Conference, and has served as Junior Counselor at several of the Student Council Leadership trainings. Kaitlyn is a member of Leadership Texarkana’s Today’s Youth, Tomorrow’s Leaders program, participates in Rotary Youth Leadership Awards, PRIDE Academy peer leader and Youth 2 Leaders. She is a member of the National Honor Society and of Beech Street Baptist Church. 

Sarah Jane Paddock is a senior at Texas High School and currently ranked sixth out of her class of 385. Sarah Jane is President of Texas High Student Body, which along with being Team Captain of the varsity soccer team, tops the list of several leadership roles at her school. She has completed over 1,000 community service hours, including a mission trip to Africa. Her honors include TYTL member, member of H Ross Perot STEM Academy, Distinguished Graduate/Summa Cum Laude Honor Graduate, National Honor Society member, among many others. She is respected by her peers and teachers as a leader, organizer and planner. Sarah Jane has proven her leadership abilities repeatedly at Texas High, from applying for National Gold Council of Excellence to hosting District 19 Spring Forum, to the donation of over $10,000 in goods and services to the Texarkana and TISD communities. 

Leadership Texarkana’s Wilbur Awards have been given annually since 1992, in memory of community servant and historian Wilbur Smith. Celebrating the power of one to positively impact our community, the Wilbur Awards are given in three categories, honoring adults, youth, and organizations to individuals and groups whose demonstrate exemplary leadership in the community and a commitment to working together for community excellence. Details on other honorees coming soon!

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