Son of Immigrants, Samuel Oguntoyinbo, of Solon High School Named 11th Grand Prize Winner
(CLEVELAND, OH) March 18, 2019 – During a prestigious annual event held in Northeast Ohio, ten high school juniors and seniors competed for the title of grand prize winner at the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage’s 11th Annual Stop the Hate® Youth Speak Out essay writing contest. The contest, focused on students speaking out in support of diversity and inclusion, has engaged an estimated 30,000+ student participants across 12 Northeast Ohio counties and awarded $1.1 million to students and schools in scholarships and anti-bias education grants over the last eleven years.
The top ten essays, selected from thousands of entries, were read for an audience of 600+ at The Cleveland Museum of Art as juniors and senior high school students vied for a chance to win the grand prize of a $40,000 scholarship.
Samuel Oguntoyinbo of Solon High School, who is the son of Nigerian immigrants, was named grand prize winner. In his essay, he wrote of his experience with racism and passion for inclusivity, saying:
I believe that once we educate others and reinforce our shared humanity, we can do away with much of the ignorance, bigotry, and hatred that plague us as a society. While this is much easier said than done, the pursuit of this goal is well worth the work it entails.
A PDF of the essay book which features the top 25 essays can be found here: https://bit.ly/2HEFVwO
For the first time in the contest’s history, presenting sponsor, Dworken and Bernstein, announced a contribution of $100,000 to the Maltz Museum’s Stop the Hate initiative, in support of anti-bias education in Northeast Ohio. Irving Rosner, a principal of the firm, presented a check to co-founders Milton and Tamar Maltz; managing director, David Schafer; board chair, Grant Dinner; Stop the Hate chair, Darrell McNair; and, Stop the Hate vice chair, Scott Simon who was also the night’s emcee before the winners were announced.
2019 YOUTH SPEAK OUT 11-12th GRADE WINNERS
YOUTH SPEAK OUT GRAND SCHOLARSHIP WINNER
(4-year $40,000 scholarship)
Samuel Oguntoyinbo, Solon High School
YOUTH SPEAK OUT FIRST RUNNER-UP
Priyanka Shrestha, Beachwood High School
YOUTH SPEAK OUT SECOND RUNNER-UP
Kennon Walton, University School
YOUTH SPEAK OUT THIRD RUNNER-UP
Mackenzie Lee, Hawken School
YOUTH SPEAK OUT HONORABLE MENTIONS
($500 cash prize)
Heavenlee Alamo, James Ford Rhodes High School
Marcie Baker, West Geauga High School
Alexa Furukawa, Revere High School
Alan Goodloe, Hudson High School
Mathilde Tomter, Beaumont School
Emma Rae Witt, Berkshire High School
2019 YOUTH SPEAK OUT 6-10TH GRADE WINNERS
(1st place receives $400 cash prize)
2019 YOUTH SING OUT WINNING SCHOOLS
Middle School Category
1st place: Garfield Middle School, two classes from this school tied for their songs, “Guns Down” and “Turn Around”
2nd place: Dike School of the Arts, for their song “Don’t Let Hate Control You”
This year’s judges for the 11th anniversary ceremony include:
Antoinette M. Baker, AVP, Operations Manager, PNC; Greer Gibbons, Project Manager, The Lubrizol Corporation; Eduardo Kim, Partner, Thompson Hine; Gregg Levine, Consultant, Ratliff & Taylor; David B. Malik, Attorney, Malik Law; Leonor M. Osorio, DO, Cleveland Clinic – Lutheran Hospital, Hispanic Clinic; Monyka Price, Chief of Education, City of Cleveland; Cecilia Render, Executive Director, Nordson Corporation Foundation; and Carl Tyler, MD, Director, Developmental Disabilities – Practice-Based Research Network, Cleveland Clinic.
Congratulations to all of the participants, finalists, and winners. Also, to the schools, teachers, readers, judges, and guests who helped make the eleventh year one of the best yet. For more information on the Maltz Museum, or to request a Stop the Hate group tour, please visit maltzmuseum.org or call 216-593-0575.
Stop the Hate® is made possible by the generous support of Presenting Sponsor: Dworken & Bernstein; For Youth Speak Out: AB Bernstein, Dealer Tire, Dominion Energy, Nordson, and Helen and Louis Stolier Family Foundation; For Youth Sing Out: The Abington Foundation, Bruening, The Char and Chuck Fowler Family Foundation, and Martha Holden Jennings Foundation. The Maltz Museum is generously supported by: Cuyahoga Arts and Culture, Jewish Federation of Cleveland, and Ohio Arts Council