SOUTH WHITLEY — It was a black and white affair and a full house at The Brownstone in South Whitley Thursday night as Leadership Whitley County Class Eleven celebrated its graduation.
“This is the 11th year for Leadership Whitley County,” said Kelley Sheiss, director.
“We have the distinct honor of coming out of infancy by reaching our 200th graduate. We also welcomed our youngest members, three high school seniors, and they came up with a brilliant idea of an outdoor amphitheatre.”
The seniors are Brandi Herron, of Churubusco, Katie Barnett, of Whitko and Samara Qureshi, of Columbia City.
Excellence of Servant
Sheiss presented the Excellence of Servant Leadership Award to Shawn Ellis of B.A.B.E., of Whitley County.
Previous winners of this award are Micropulse, David Smith, J&J Insurance and Carrie Hoffman.
As she recognized each member of Leadership Whitley County Class Eleven, Sheiss told a personal and humorous story of each graduate. The men received an embroidered pullover shirt and the women received a silver necklace with a compass on it.
Sheiss also gave each one a small token gift signifying their individuality. Everything from a jar of pickles to Justin Bieber loot bags were presented.
Members of the Leadership Whitley County Class of Eleven are Peter Allen, PNC Bank; Katie Barnett, Whitko High School; Chelsey Barrett, Whitley County Community Foundation; Ryan Crowder, AllStar Communications; Megan Devito, YMCA Swim Coach; Brandi Herron, Churubusco High School; Luke Hollmann, Under Sea Sensor Systems; Heather Holzinger, STAR Financial Bank; Joseph Kieffer, Advanced Assembly; Shawn Lickey, City of Columbia City; Kristi Maloney, Parkview Oaks; Mark Mathias, Micropulse; Aaron Mathieu, Whitley County Historical Museum; Carrie Meyer, Taylor University; Dennis Norris, Norris Insurance; Lindsay Pease, Whitley County Animal Shelter; Samara Qureshi, Columbia City High School; Laura Richcreek, Habitat for Humanity of Whitley County; Kristine Straub, Whitley County Literacy Council; Zach Ziliak, STAR Insurance and Julie Zollinger, Parkview Whitley Hospital.