Corona del Mar Today: Speak Up Newport awards scholarships


The Speak Up Newport Board of Directors presented the 2011 Dorothy Hardcastle Scholarship Awards to two students at its July meeting.

Corona del Mar High School’s Abigail McBean and Newport Harbor High School’s Alex Jolly both won the $1,500 scholarships, which are awarded annually to students who contribute to the community.

In a news release, Speak Up Newport said McBean “is the epitome of a great volunteer, sharing her skills and interests with others in the community. She was a four-year member of National Charity League and volunteered as a tutor at Shalimar Learning Center.”


McBean maintained a 3.71 grade-point average, danced with the school’s Orchesis dance program and worked as a dance instructor at Harbor Day School and Girls Inc., the statement said.

She plans to attend New York University in the fall with a major in elementary education and a minor in Spanish.

Jolly earned Boy Scout’s Eagle Award in 2006 and stayed active with his troop, serving as an officer and mentoring younger scouts, the statement said. He was a volunteer with the Beach City Service League and performed hours of community service with many other organizations including Relay for Life and Someone Cares Soup Kitchen.

“He was a member of the NHHS Ambassadors Club for four years and was founder and president of the Beautiful Club, which raises funds to help those in need of surgical procedures due to birth defects or accidents,” the statement said.

Track and field team captain and a member of the cross-country team, he maintained a 3.88 grade point average and was a member of the National Honor Society, serving as treasurer his senior year. He also participated in the mentor program of the Da Vinci Academy, job shadowing Dr. Christopher Duma, a neurologist at Hoag Hospital, for a year.

“From this life-changing experience, he has chosen to continue in the field of medicine, attending the Joint Science Program at Pitzer/Claremont College this fall,” the statement said.

The awards, which were established in 1982, are in memory of Hardcastle, who was a Newport Beach resident and an original member of Speak Up Newport.

Speak Up Newport is a nonprofit, non-partisan citizens group organized to promote the common good and general welfare of the Newport Beach community.


NBPD explorers recognized

Three Newport Beach Police Explorers have been recognized for outstanding service, police announced in a statement.

NBPD Explorer Sgt. Michael Valadez, 16, received a Life Saving Award for helping a choking child after seeing a mother screaming and running from her home with the child in her arms, the statement said.

“Using both chest and back thrusts, he forced the object out of the child,” the statement said. “The Orange County Fire Department’s Paramedic Unit transported the child to the hospital, afterward crediting Valadez for saving the child’s life.”

The Boy Scouts of America and the Orange County Law Enforcement Explorers Advisors’ Assn. presented the award on Thursday at the Annual Gold Awards Ceremony at Irvine Regional Park in Orange.

Two other explorers received Gold Awards for their service. Explorer Capt. Melinda Green, 17, was honored for her leadership and ability to foster teamwork, and Explorer Sgt. Giovanni Almaraz, 17, was honored for volunteering more than 500 hours to provide training, conduct community service projects and other charity work.

The Newport Beach Explorer Police Explorer Post is open to young adults from 14 to 21 years old. For more information, call Sgt. Lloyd Whisenant at (949) 644-3665.


Another lap of fundraising for CdM pool

Fundraising for a new locker room for the Corona del Mar High School swimming pool is underway, with organizers saying they have raised more than half of the $1 million goal.

The Newport-Mesa Unified School District has promised $325,000, and the city of Newport Beach last month approved $338,000 in funds for the project, said organizer Angela Kraus.

The city has a joint-use agreement for the pool, the Marian Bergeson Aquatic Center.

Another $10,000 came in the form of a gift from the CdMHS class of 2011, which was announced during last month’s graduation ceremony, Kraus said.

Another fundraiser, selling tiles featuring 11-inch fish made of blue, green and violet iridescent glass and etched with gold letters, has brought in several thousand dollars, she said.

Tiles, which cost $600 for individuals and $1,500 for businesses, are still available, she said.

“We’ve done a good job of getting grass-roots outreach for this,” Kraus said. “Now we want to kick-start fundraising with the business community.”

Kraus hopes to have the entire amount raised by Aug. 31.

City Councilwoman Leslie Daigle has been a longtime supporter of the pool’s joint-use agreement the city has with the school district.

“The historic partnership between NMUSD and the city of Newport Beach provides a flagship facility for participants in scholastic and city recreation programs,” she said.