FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
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GALE GERINGER (307) 634-8195


Harrison Named Thomas Foundation Leadership Award Winner




Susan Thomas, left, presented the fifth annual Craig and Susan Thomas Foundation Leadership Award to Ursula Harrison of Laramie. Harrison is the principal of Whiting High School, an alternative high school of choice.

Cheyenne – Ursula Harrison has been selected to receive the fifth annual Leadership Award from the Craig and Susan Thomas Foundation. The Leadership Award recognizes and honors an adult who champions the needs of young people in Wyoming.

Harrison is the principal of Whiting High School in Laramie, an alternative high school of choice.

Susan Thomas, foundation director, said, "It is an honor to give this award to someone who nurtures and understands learners who are at-risk, while at the same time teaching them personal responsibility. Mrs. Harrison is a leader who provides opportunity to those who need it most."

The Craig and Susan Thomas Foundation Leadership award was presented to Harrison at the Wyoming State Fair last week. In addition to the honor, the award comes with a $2,500 check to be used as the winner chooses.

"I truly believe that counselors, mentors and educators deserve recognition for the work they do with our Wyoming learners, especially those who are at-risk. I want them to know that we value their time, efforts and dedication," Susan Thomas said.

Harrison was nominated by Charlotte Abelson, also of Laramie, who says, “Mrs. Harrison is tireless in her commitment to her students and their well-being. With a poverty rate of over 70 percent, the students at Whiting struggle not only with academics but with meeting life’s basic needs. It is typical of Mrs. Harrison to arrange for food and housing for her students, to personally buy coats and shoes for her students, and to enlist community members to find jobs for her students.”

The Craig and Susan Thomas Foundation focuses on students who are at-risk. This award is of the key elements to the Foundation. The others are a statewide mentorship program that includes scholarships; and grants to groups that support our goals. Earlier this summer, the Foundation selected fourteen students to receive college scholarships and to enter the mentorship program. Names of the recipients can be found at www.thomas-foundation.com.

The Foundation is named in part for the late United States Senator Craig Thomas who championed the cause of Wyoming's youth.

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