35 Girl Scouts Win Gold Award, Group's Highest Honor

Community service projects including fund-raisers for abused children helped 35 Orange County Girl Scouts win the Gold Award, the highest honor in Girl Scouting.

A spokeswoman for the Girl Scout Council of Orange County said 10% to 12% of the county's Scouts earn the award each year, compared to a national average of 4%.

Among the local honorees was Anaheim resident Tami Eilenberger from Canyon High School, who collected clothing, organized a tutorial program and planned a holiday party for residents at Eli Home, a shelter for abused women and their children.

Mission Viejo resident Sara Fleishman of El Toro High School brought dogs to residents of local retirement centers.

Saddleback High School student Laurie Hargraves of Santa Ana put together a "Disability Awareness Week" for her classmates. One of the activities was a fair at which students could "try on" various disabilities.

Irvine resident Dena Berezin of University High School organized a walkathon that gathered toy donations for Casita de San Jose, a home for abused children.

The other Orange County Girl Scouts receiving the Gold Award are: Allison Ayers, Alyssa Penmen, Kristin Rydberg and Lori Yamato of Anaheim; Elizabeth Dearborn of Costa Mesa; Lisa Jacobson and Erica Lewis of Cypress; Tricia Tanaka of Hacienda Heights; Michelle Buckels and Shannon Herstein of Huntington Beach; Lee Ann Blanke of Irvine; Melissa Fetch of Fountain Valley; Lesley Finch and Stephanie Sobieski of Fullerton; Erin Slattery of Laguna Beach; Jennifer Boyne and Cristina Sangster of Laguna Niguel; Michelle Fovall of Lake Forest; Rachael Finn of Los Alamitos; Jamie Knutsen of Mission Viejo; Allison Cordrey of Newport Beach; Anne Kerfoot and Christina Molodowitch of Orange; Erica Chenal, Dana Stanley and Julie Thompson of Placentia; Lucinda Farless and Blair Nicholas of Santa Ana; Ashley Middleton of Seal Beach; Kelly Cummings of Villa Park; and Misook Park of Yorba Linda.

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