Three local students recently participated in the the high-energy, thought-provoking Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership weekend, with the goal of inspiring Ohio's next leaders.
They were Kristen Buder of Edison High School, Jeremy Peterson of Norwalk High School and Stephanie Dankelson of St. Paul High School
Speakers for the high school sophomores tackled issues such as American health, youth volunteering, Ohio education, 21st century journalism and youth consumerism.
The four-day seminar, extended an extra day, united the selected students across Northern and Western Ohio with distinguished leaders in business, government and education.
More than 168 ambassadors, as they're called, were registered to take part in the servant leadership weekend that included a day of community service projects.
Last year the young leaders built friendships while broadening their understanding of their leadership potential. Sponsors for the weekend include local businesses, individuals and organizations such as Kiwanis and the University of Findlay.
Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership was established in 1958 by Wyatt Earp actor, Hugh O'Brian, following a visit to Africa, where he was inspired by a meeting with humanitarian Dr. Albert Schweitzer.
"One of the things Schweitzer said to me was that the most important thing in education was to teach young people to think for themselves," O'Brian said. "From that inspiration, and with the support of others who believe in youth and the American dream, I started HOBY to seek out, recognize, and develop outstanding leadership potential among our nation's youth."
Those interested in supporting the leadership program can go online to www.hoby.org to learn more.