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SVHS Junior Named 2019 Student Hero

Texas Student Hero award recipient Abigail Redin, fourth from left, was recognized for a Parent Teacher Student Association project. From left, Smithson Valley High School PTSA President Jennifer Backlund, Texas Parent Teacher Association President Sheri Doss, Comal ISD Council of PTAs Reflections Chair Jessica McAnally, Redin, Council Vice President Tracy Molina, Comal Independent School Board Member Michelle Ross, and Council President Shirley Koop.

What began as a Parent Teacher Student Association service project in February ended in a surprise awards ceremony for 17-year-old Smithson Valley High School Junior Abigail Redin, who was presented with the 2019 Student Hero award by Texas State Board of Education District 5 Member Ken Mercer on Thursday, May 16.

Redin led a multi-campus environmental campaign that only lasted 11 days but resulted in the collection of 5,500 shoes which were donated to Soles4Souls, a non-profit organization which repurposes and recycles every shoe that is donated.

She enlisted the help of students on six Comal ISD campuses as well as the DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse at the Village at Stone Oak in San Antonio. 

Redin was nominated for the annual award by SVHS Principal Michael Wahl, who believed her volunteer work and leadership embodied the award’s mission, which is to recognize students who have demonstrated and inspired acts of kindness and compassion.

The SBOE Student Hero award is a prestigious honor with only 15 chosen annually, one from each of the state  board of education’s 15 districts. Mercer, whose district includes 13 counties, chose Redin as the District 5 honoree.

“Each year I receive nominations of incredible, extraordinary ‘student heroes’ using extraordinary skills to make a huge, positive difference in our world,” Mercer said. “This award recognizes not just Abigail’s leadership, but also the heart and spirit of Smithson Valley High School and Comal ISD.”

While accepting the honor, Redin was quick to point out that she couldn’t have done it without the help of her fellow students, many of whom were on hand for the presentation.

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