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Kirsten Carnese - 2019 Citizen Recipient

Kirsten is a parent committed to creating meaningful experiences for children in Lake Oswego. She has served as the PTO president for the last two years and has spearheaded the Annual Culture Week where students have the opportunity to explore a new culture through art, music, dance, language, and food. The students have learned about Mexico and Japan in previous years; this year they will focus on the Nordic countries. Her tireless work involves securing performers and exhibits, creating communication for various stakeholders, securing supplies and planning logistics. She also volunteers with a wide range of organizations, including The Pink Eraser Project, Hunger Fighters Food Pantry, and Helping Hands.

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Sarah Howell - 2019 Citizen Recipient

Sarah is dedicated to improving educational opportunities for students in Lake Oswego. Having previously sat on the School Board, PTO, and School Advisory Committee, she was very familiar with the needs of the district. Her initiative resulted in River Grove Elementary School attaining certification as an Oregon Green School. This project involved countless hours of community organizing, planning, meetings, and hands-on work. The students will now have their own sustainable garden; Sarah is looking to expand the garden to include food that could be used to feed needy families or in the school cafeteria. She has also been instrumental in planning events for the school’s “Culture Week.”

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Kerstan Ruffer - 2019 Citizen Recipient

Kerstan is a model of “service above self” in the community. As a parent volunteer, she chaired a committee to turn an old playground into a sustainable garden and spearheaded the fundraising for the project. Students were involved in every aspect of the renovation; this provided a venue for students to learn about the various aspects of horticulture. She serves in the parent clubs at LOJH and LOHS and drives fundraising to support their music programs. In addition, she hosts private music events at her home and has raised funds for the school district, Moms Demand Action, and the LO Hunt Equestrian Center.