Troy Exchange Club presents A.C.E. Award

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, May 10, 2017

The Troy Exchange Club honored Chenzira Flowers of Pike County High School with the club’s 10th Annual A.C.E. Award (Accepting the Challenge of Excellence) at its Thursday meeting.

Diane Aman, A.C.E. Award committee chair, said this award recognizes high school seniors who have overcome great physical, emotional or social obstacles and are now eligible for high school graduation. Sharon Sullivan, PCHS counselor, nominated Chenzira for the prestigious award.

“Chenzira overcame a genetic eye disease called Keratoconus, which is basically thinning of the cornea,” Aman said. “She was declared legally blind during her eighth-grade year and began to prepare for corneal transplants.”

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After two years of darkness, the discovery of a specialized contact brought light back into Chenzira’s world and allowed her to postpone the inevitable surgeries.

“Despite the obstacles, Chenzira has flourished personally and academically,” Aman said. “She is graduating Pike County High School with honors and is in the top 20 of her class.”

Chenzira’s mindset is evident in a required narrative she wrote for the A.C.E. Award.

“I will always be legally blind but I will never lose sight of my future again,” she wrote.

Upon high school graduation, Chenzira’s goals are to attend Auburn University/Montgomery to pursue a degree in mental health counseling or sociology and to ultimately help kids express their feelings and discover their futures, Aman said. She also aspires to explore an acting career.

“The Troy Exchange Club congratulates Chenzira, her family and her school upon this honor and extends wishes for even greater success in the future,” Aman said.

As recipient of the Troy Exchange Club’s A.C.E. Award, Chenzira received a certificate of achievement and $100 in honor of her nomination. She also received a framed certificate, an A.C.E. plaque and a check in the amount of $1,000 to be used to further her education.