alief shadowOlle Middle School students swept the competition at the National Junior Forensic League (NJFL) National Tournament in Birmingham. Faiza Qazi finished third in the nation in Original Oratory. Diamond Alexander also advanced to the quarterfinals (top 24 in the nation) in Poetry Interpretation, and Alaynna Smith advanced to the quarterfinals (top 25 in the nation) in Storytelling. Coach George Tennison was also honored at the tournament as one of the first two coaches to receive a diamond award in the NJFL, which is based upon having a minimum of five years as a NJFL member and on the points earned by their students during competitions. Assistant Principal Andrea Sandles accompanied the team to their competition in Alabama.

Business Partners and Mentoring Specialist Dee Jones was presented the President’s Citation for Outstanding Achievement by the Houston Westchase Rotary Club. Jones received the prestigious award recognition of meritorious service and for furthering the principles and ideals of the Rotary way of life. It was presented by Paul Dickens, the immediate past president of the club.

The Alief District Film Festival recently recognized high school students for their video submissions. Hastings High School student Steven Duong’s video, Jumper, was named Best Video. Taylor swept the competition in 11 categories, while Hastings took home five awards total. Elsik was awarded the top honor for animation and special effects, while the PSA Award went to Kerr High School’s Van Tran.

Miller Intermediate’s Ladies of Distinction and Men of Excellence recently raised a total of $5,054.84 in support of the March of Dimes. The organizations exceeded their goal of $4,500. To date, Miller has raised more than $19,000 to support the cause. The funds will support programs that help mothers have healthy, full-term pregnancies and funds research to find answers to problems that threaten babies.

Alief ISD’s business partners, the Sugar Land Skeeters, recently celebrated Alief Night, and Superintendent HD Chambers kicked off the event by throwing out the first pitch. The Taylor High School JROTC presented the colors, and Holmquist Elementary Principal Dr. Nancy Lewin sang the national anthem.

Several Alief ISD students were recognized at the Junior Visual Arts Scholastic Event (VASE) recently. Klentzman Intermediate students Cynthia Reed, Ricky Tran and Victoria Lodico received a rating of IV (superior). Lodico also received top honors with a silver medal for her mixed media piece. Holub Intermediate students Janice Duong and Doan Pham also placed regionally for their pieces.

Natasha Skaggs Breaux, a Class of 2002 graduate, recently received her law degree and MBA. She graduated from Hastings High School and also attended Hearne and Albright. She will be working for Judge David Hittner for two years and will later join the law firm, Fulbright and Jaworsky LLP, which is a member of the global legal practice, Norton Rose Fulbright.