Lemont High School freshman Olivia Matthews captured a state title earlier this month during the 2013 Future Business Leaders of America State Leadership Conference.
Students from Lemont placed among the top ten in 15 of the 19 categories in which they were entered at the FBLA conference, which was held April 12-13 in Springfield, IL. The event attracted more than 1,450 student competitors from across the state, making it the state’s largest FBLA conference ever.
Matthews was the state’s top performer in the Public Speaking I category. Her win marked the first event state title for Lemont since 2011 and only the ninth in the chapter's short history.
Lemont students won three events at the 2010 FBLA State Leadership Conference, and captured five categories in 2011. Olivia's brother, Dylan Matthews ‘11, was part of one of the winning event squads as a senior in 2011.
Lemont nabbed two runner-up finishes at the event. Seniors Jake Smagacz, Justin Stanwyck and Dan Totura teamed for second place in Battle of the Chapters, while junior Lucas Heatherington was second in Business Procedures.
Several more students gathered top-five finishes in their respective categories. For the second straight year, senior Zach Reitz was third in the Accounting II competition. and senior Ethan Parafink was third in Business Communications. Stanwyck and Totura were fourth in the Networking Business Project category, while senior Kevin Fischer (Accounting I) and freshman Spenser Bailey (Introduction to Business Communications) earned fifth-place finishes.
Seniors Monika Filar, Katie Putna and Courtney Toth were seventh in Community Service Project, as was senior Matt Vitt in Business Law. Stanwyck (Computer Applications), Totura (Job Interview) and sophomore Radomir Fugiel (Business Math) earned ninth-place finishes. Smagacz teamed with seniors Justin Brady and Joe Paloian for tenth place in Emerging Business Issues, while junior Kevin Trojak was tenth in Business Calculations.
Other state competitors included seniors Ryan Gaffney, Paul Grossi, Nina Moeller and Nick Westerhausen; sophomore Connor Koehler and freshman Julissa Nuñez.
Lemont was the class of the competition at January’s Central Northern Area Conference regional at Lincoln-Way East High School, nabbing first-place finishes in 17 of 27 events and winning the ‘Battle of the Chapters’ competition.
Team regional event winners included: Filar, Putna and Toth (Community Service Project); Brady, Paloian and Smagacz (Emerging Business Issues); Grossi and Westerhausen (Entrepreneurship); and seniors Michael Krueger and Tadas Vildziunas (Management Decision Making). Individual event winners included: Bailey (Introduction to Business Communications), Matthews (Public Speaking I), Nuñez (Impromptu Speaking), Parafink (Business Communications), Reitz (Accounting II), Stanwyck (Spreadsheet Applications), Vitt (Business Law), and seniors Jack Bort (Business Procedures) and Tom Griffin (Accounting I); juniors Rebeca Bagdocimo (Public Speaking II), Lizzy Forzley (Future Business Leader) and Apolonia Kasprzyk (Cyber Security); and sophomore Jake Rangel (Word Processing I).
Lemont’s FBLA chapter, which advanced to state competition for the fourth straight year, is co-sponsored by teachers John Aspel and Bill Mondrella. The FBLA is the largest business career student organization in the world, and includes 215,000 students worldwide in its high school division.
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