Area Students Receive Emily Couric Leadership Award

By: Whitney Holmes Email
By: Whitney Holmes Email

April 25, 2007

Ten area female high school seniors were awarded for their leadership in their communities at a forum on Wednesday afternoon in honor of the late Emily Couric, sister of CBS news anchor Katie Couric.

These girls are being awarded, essentially, for being young Emily Courics.

Emily was very active in our area, sitting on the Charlottesville School Board and, as a state senator, was a rising star in Virginia politics. She was beginning her run for Lieutenant Governor when she discovered she had cancer.

She died in 2001.

Each girl received a $1,000 scholarship, and St. Anne's-Belfield Senior Lucie Rhoads received a $10,000 scholarship.

CBS Sportscaster Leslie Visser presented the awards. As a pioneer in many endeavors, Visser was an appropriate presenter.

"I tell (young women) 'Whatever you want to do, I am example that you can do it, because it did not exist for women before I started,'" said Visser. "So I always try to tell people, 'You too! Dream big.'"

Rhoads said it is important to look to accomplished women such as Couric and Visser for inspiration. "Emily Couric, for one, my parents really admired her courage. And Leslie Visser, I am really excited to meet. I think they are symbols of what women can be in the future."

Visser was honored with the organization's Women's Leadership Award. Other winners include Katie Couric, Caroline Kennedy and Sandra Day O'Connor.

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