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North Middle Student Receives Friedlander Upstander Award

North Middle Student Receives Friedlander Upstander Award

North Middle School eighth-grader Takoua King is a first-place winner in the middle school category of the 2024 Friedlander Upstander Awards, sponsored by the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center (HTMC) of Nassau County and the Claire Friedlander Family Foundation.

Takoua was nominated for this award by North Middle Assistant Principal Nancy Gunning in recognition of her instincts to stand up for what is right and her consistent actions to speak out against injustice. “She models for every one – each and every day – what it truly means to be an Upstander,” Ms. Gunning wrote in her letter of recommendation. The award application also includes an essay written by the nominee about their personal experiences.

For 12 years, the HTMC and the Claire Friedlander Family Foundation have presented Friedlander Upstander Awards to Nassau and Suffolk County students who have shown themselves to be Upstanders against intolerance in all of its forms. The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation was established by Claire Friedlander, a Holocaust Survivor, whose life was saved by people who took a stand against prejudice. “This award honors her life and embodies her legacy, and the Foundation is proud to support young Upstanders who make the often-difficult decision to extinguish the flames of intolerance wherever they burn,” according to the HTMC.

Friedlander Upstander Award recipients are selected in a middle school and high school division. Award winners are presented with a $5,000 education scholarship. This year’s winners will be recognized at the HTMC’s annual Upstander Award Dinner on May 20, 2024.

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