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Rotary Club of Destin Announces New Board, Rotarian of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Scholarship Winner

The Rotary Club of Destin recently announced its 2022-23 Board of Directors: President Marcia Hull, Brenda Gray, Christian Carlee, Michael Burgess, John Prudhome, Zhalman Harris, Bekah Manley, Mackenzie Mainland, Les Porterfield, Shannah Hanks, Shantelle Dedicke, Lori Leath Smith, Ryan Simus, Dave Morrow and Lockwood Wernet.   

These community leaders will spearhead the club’s fundraising efforts this year to support various charities including Food For Thought, Harvest House Destin, the Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation (MKAF), and the Boys and Girls Club of Okaloosa County. They will also strive to carry out this year’s Rotary International (RI) presidential theme, Imagine Rotary, which urges people to dream big and harness their connections and the power of Rotary to turn those dreams into reality.

Also announced is this year’s Rotarian of the Year Bob Hafner, a Destin Rotarian with perfect attendance for many years. Rookie of the Year is outstanding member Rebekah Manley. These two award recipients represent the club’s youngest member at age 26 as well as its most senior member at 90 years young.   

Kerry Seekamp was awarded a $10,000 scholarship from the Destin Rotary Scholarship Fund.  Seekamp, having graduated Summa Cum Laude from Fort Walton Beach High School (FWBHS) served as President of the FCA, Co-President of Mu Alpha Theta, and was an active member of the National Honor Society. She represented FWBHS as ALA Girl’s State in 2021, received the prestigious Helen J. Woods Outstanding Representative Award, the Anne T. Mitchell Award for Academic Excellence and Viking Scholar Award all four years. An AP Scholar, Seekamp was named to the Class of 2022 FWBHS Hall of Fame and received the FWBHS Citizenship Award. She attended three USAF Teen Leadership Summits, representing military dependent youth and is a recipient of the City of Fort Walton Beach ACE Award for Civic Excellence.

Excelling at athletics at FWBHS, Seekamp was a four-year varsity member of the Track and Field team and served as Captain her senior year. She is the 2022 FHSAA 3A State Champion in Girls Pole Vault and has held the FWBHS Girls Pole Vault record since her freshman year. She was the 2022 Okaloosa County, 3A District 1, and 3A Region 1 Champion in Pole Vault. She was also a State Qualifier in High Jump and a varsity member of the Swim Team, qualifying for District and Regional Championships all four years. Seekamp will be attending Smith College in Northampton, MA to pursue a degree in Mathematics and compete on the Track and Field Team. 

The Rotary Club of Destin is known for its fun and famous annual crawfish bash as well as its smoked pork butts which have won many awards over the years! These efforts and others allow the club to help support these valuable, local organizations that are vital in our community.

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