Zonta recognizes outstanding young women


COLUMBUS, Ohio — On Sunday, the Zonta Club of Columbus recognized its 2024 Outstanding Young Women (OYW) award recipients at a reception and ceremony at the Worthington Hills Country Club.

Merry Korn, CEO of Pearl Interactive Network, gave an inspirational keynote address to the award recipients, family members, school officials, and Zonta members in attendance. The 12 women honored were selected based on their excellence in academics, leadership, and service to their school and community.

The 2024 OYW Award Recipients are:

• Rosalea Christy – Licking Valley High School

• Lillian Corpening-Morgan – Pickerington High School North

• Dani DeWeese – Hilliard Davidson High School

• Adela Gerstmann – Worthington Kilbourne High School

• Claire McGowan – Fairfield Christian Academy

• Renie Mensah-Bonsu – Thomas Worthington High School

• Delaney Nelson – Rutherford B Hayes High School

• Cassidy Predieri – Granville High School

• Zaina Shaik – Dublin Coffman High School

• Ellie Shultheis – Teays Valley High School

• Lara Teri – New Albany High School

• Madelyn Zimmerman – North Union High School

Four of the recipients also received financial awards; Shaik received $250, Corpening-Morgan received $500, Nelson received $750, and Teri received $1,500. Additionally, the Zonta Club of Columbus will nominate Teri for Zonta International’s Young Women in Public Affairs award, which awards the top 37 international recipients with $5,000 each.

Since 1980, the Zonta Club of Columbus has recognized 545 OYW award recipients from over 90 high schools in Central Ohio. This year, over 100 Central Ohio high schools were invited to submit a nominee from their school for the award.

The 35 nominees submitted were invited to attend a leadership forum in February. During this forum, Zonta members facilitated discussions and activities to help the young women develop their leadership skills and transition to the next phase of their life. The 12 OYW recipients honored were selected from the nominees based on their academic achievements and awards, community service, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation, and three essays.

The Zonta Club of Columbus was established in 1929 and has developed service projects tailored to promote the status of women locally. Current service projects the Zonta Club of Columbus promotes are Outstanding Young Women, Sanctuary Night, Maryhaven, and a non-traditional scholarship at Ohio Dominican University. To learn more about the Zonta Club of Columbus, please visit zontacolumbus.org

Founded in 1919, Zonta International is a global service organization of executives and professionals working together to empower women and girls through service and advocacy. Zonta members volunteer their time, talents, and money to local and international service projects, as well as scholarships and award programs aimed at furthering women’s education, leadership, and youth development. Over 26,000 members belong to more than 1,100 Zonta clubs in 64 countries and geographic areas.

Submitted by Zonta Club of Columbus.

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