May 3, 2016
ANCHORAGE, ALASKA – Today, at the Drive for Perfect Attendance grand finale, five high school students were rewarded for having perfect attendance throughout the entire 2015-2016 school year. The five finalists each went home as winners, but it was Kendra Nethery, A junior at East High School, who drove off in a brand new Jeep Renegade from Lithia Chrysler Jeep Dodge of South Anchorage. The remaining four finalists were each awarded 50,000 Alaska Airlines Miles from GCI.
The finale began with five Jeep Patriots vehicles parked in a semi-circle. Each finalist chose a key at random and then selected a Jeep. With their keys in the ignition, the countdown began; and the five students turned their keys at the same time to see if whose key would be a match for a vehicle. Nethery could hardly believe it when her Jeep’s ignition fired up and she was declared the grand prize winner.
The four runners up each received 50,000 Alaska Airlines Miles courtesy of GCI. Each student has demonstrated exceptional work ethic and persevered through various challenges to achieve a perfect attendance record this year.
Paige Ardizzone is a senior at Eagle River High School. She plans to use the Alaska Airlines Miles from GCI to fly home from college more often to visit family. She plans to attend Bethel University in Minnesota.
Grant Klug is a senior at South High School. He plans to attend Montana State University in the fall to study electrical engineering and computer science.
Kylan Osborne is a junior at Dimond High School who would like to attend college at a university where he can continue to play basketball. Bubacar Touray is a junior at West High School.
The Drive for Perfect Attendance is an Anchorage School District School Business Partnership program and is now in its third year. Local dealership Lithia Chrysler Jeep Dodge of South Anchorage donates a brand new Jeep to the program as the grand prize each year. GCI supports the program with Alaska Airlines Miles for one winner each quarter as well as miles for each of the four finalists at the year-end event.
The Anchorage School District set a goal for every student to achieve 90 percent or better attendance by the year 2020. During the 2015-2016 school year, there were 1,039 high school students who achieved perfect attendance in the district. Another benchmark of success is the number of Anchorage high school students who have achieved 95 percent or better attendance throughout the year. This year, 4,493 students met that goal, which is 38 percent of all Anchorage high school students.
“We’re proud to have a hand in making a difference in important matters like education,” said Lithia Chrysler Jeep Dodge of South Anchorage General Manager Troy Jarvis. “Seeing the positive impact this program has made in attendance numbers over the past three years only reiterates the importance of recognizing these incredible students for their dedication to their studies.”
“The Drive for Perfect Attendance program has lasting rewards for all students, not just those who received prizes today. Each student who makes the commitment to show up to school every day learns the important role attendance plays in success, not only in school but in a future career,” said GCI Senior Vice President and General Manager of Consumer Services Paul Landes. “As one of the state’s top private employers, we’re proud to be part of a program that encourages exceptional work ethic and an ongoing commitment to education.”
To learn more about the Drive for Perfect Attendance initiative, visit ASDK12.org/Parents/Attendance.
About Lithia Automotive Group
Originally founded in Medford, Oregon 1946, Lithia Automotive Group is a publicly traded company with more than 150 automotive dealerships in 13 states, including nine in Alaska. Lithia currently employs more than 500 employees in its Alaska dealerships. From the very beginning, it has been a Lithia priority to actively contribute in the communities in which Lithia does business. For more information on Lithia community commitments, please visit www.lithia4kids.com. More information About Lithia Chrysler Jeep Dodge of South Anchorage is available at www.lithiachrysleranchorage.com.
GCI is Alaska’s largest integrated telecommunications provider and offers wireless, voice, data and video services statewide. Since 1979 GCI has invested more than $3 billion to bring the latest telecommunication technologies to communities across Alaska. GCI is committed to providing innovation to grow Alaska’s economy, support industry and jobs, provide quality education and healthcare, and maintain the quality of life that all Alaskans enjoy. To learn more about GCI visit www.gci.com.
Nikkie Viotto, Thompson & Co. Public Relations
907-561-4488 (o), 907-351-5407 (c), Nikkie@thompsonpr.com