Angela Bombaci, daughter of Rick Bombaci and June and Scott Colony, was selected as this year's first place state winner in the Oregon State Elks Association (OSEA) "Most Valuable Student" scholarship contest, held this past Saturday at the Enterprise Elks Lodge. Dean Defrees of Baker City was selected as the first place state boy winner. Both will advance to the national competition.
Angela is a senior at Wallowa High School and joins an elite group of students who have been recent first place state winners in the Elks scholarship contest. Past winners from Wallowa HS include Kyle Johnson (1999), David Temple (1998) and Cory Carmen (1997).
According to Chuck Haines, local and state Elks scholarship chairman, Wallowa County and Northeast Oregon have a rich tradition of winning or receiving high placement at the district and state levels of competition and advancing to the national level.
The OSEA will advance 17 brochures to the national level of the competition. Angela's brochure will be one of five hundred nationwide brochures in competition for the coveted $60,000 Elks National Foundation first place award. At this point, Angela has received $1,000 from the local competition; an OSEA district award of $1,600; $2,200 at the state level; and is guaranteed a minimum of $4,000 at the national level, for a minimum total of $8,800.
The state scholarship contest brought approximately 100 out-of-town students, parents, lodge representatives and state Elks officials to the local area, the majority of whom had never been to Wallowa County. The out-of-town guests were provided with Wallowa County Chamber of Commerce literature and a van tour that highlighted historical and cultural sites within the county.
The Saturday evening event included a banquet with state scholarship finalists introducing each other in a humorous fashion, Craig Nichols reciting some of his cowboy poetry and concluded with the state scholarship award ceremony.