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DISTINGUISHED: Robledo selected 2020 Pike County DYW

Isabel Robledo, a senior at Pike Liberal Arts School, will represent Pike County as its 2020 Distinguished Young Woman.

Robledo was awarded the prestigious title at the Pike County DYW Program Saturday night at the Claudia Crosby Theater. First runner up in the DYW program was Hannah Hunter, a senior at Charles Henderson High School. Second runner up was Sydney Watson, also a senior at Charles Henderson High School.

For Robledo, entering the Pike County DYW program meant stepping outside of her comfort zone.

“I’m very comfortable playing music but going on stage and talking to an audience is not anything that I am comfortable doing,” she said. “But several people had encouraged me to participate in the DYW and I decided, why not?”

Robledo said, she was nervous about the interview category but once she began talking with the judges, she became very comfortable.

“The most difficult category for me was the physical fitness category,” she said. “I had not been playing tennis for a while, so I was not as prepared for that category has I would like to have been.”

Robledo said participation in the DYW program was a good experience.

“I enjoyed meeting the participants that I didn’t already know and being together with all the girls,” she said and added that all of the extra activities were fun. “I especially enjoyed reading to the young children at the daycare centers. They were sweet and fun. I also enjoyed visiting the Pioneer Museum of Alabama. I visited the museum when I was younger. Going back, I learned a lot about pioneer life.”

With the Pike County DYW program behind her, Robledo said she is looking forward to participating in the Alabama DYW program in Montgomery in January.

“I don’t know a lot about the state program yet but I do know I will need to work on my physical fitness,” she said. “I’m looking forward to being the 2020 Pike County DYW and to the state program.”

Robledo will have a busy year. She is band captain at PLAS and that will be both fun and challenging, as will the statewide DYW program. However, having stepped outside her comfort zone for the Pike County DYW program, she will know more what to expect of the program and of herself.

“So, participating should be less stressful,” she said. “I would recommend DYW. It’s a good learning experience and I enjoyed being a part of it.”

Robledo career plans are to attend Troy University and study international languages and cultures.

Candice Howard Shaughnessy, Pike County DYW program coordinator, said the DYW program evaluates participates in several categories. Scholastics counts 25 percent of the total score, interview, 25 percent; talent, 20 percent; fitness, 15 percent, and self-expression, 15 percent.

Robledo also won the scholastic, interview and talent categories.

Robledo also won the scholastic, interview and talent categories. Huner won the physical fitness and self-expression categories.

Porter Lankford, PLAS, won the “Be My Best Self Essay” and Huner and Quarissa Caffie, shared the “Spirit of DYW” title.