The Jackson County Republican Executive Committee offered a scholarship in honor of Mr. Richard Hand who served in the Jackson County Republican Party for many years. He was a well-respected man of the community who was very civic minded and involved in many organizations. The outstanding recipient receives $500 per fall and spring semester at Chipola College for the 2015/2016 school year.
We would like to congratulate Kaulder Kressman, the first recipient of the Richard A. Hand Scholarship. Kressman, a 2015 graduate of Marianna High School, exemplified academic excellence through his GPA and college readiness assessment scores. Kaulder is the son of Karl and Julie Kressman of Bascom. He has been actively involved in FFA for four years and is currently employed at Panhandle Excavating as well as the family cattle business.
The criteria for this scholarship included an essay, which he read to the Committee in April 2015. His topic of choice was “Why are you a proud American?” and is shown below in its entirety:
I’m blessed to be a proud American, and it’s easy for me due to my heritage. My great grandmother Kressman (on my father’s side) was a Gridley. That was a family with a long-standing heritage in this country. She received 17 gold and diamond oakleaf cluster broach pins, one for every famous American in her family tree. I possess an ancestor, Edward Doty who sailed with the pilgrims on the Mayflower. He was the first person tried and acquitted in a court of law in the New World. He was found not guilty of murder of another passenger while in route to Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts, so the process of “innocent till proven guilty” is in my heritage. Many other famous American are in my bloodline whom include George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson and many others who settled in the area of Northern Virginia. Under the present governmental condition that our country is under and its economic strains that the government has produced, it may at sometimes make being a “Proud American” somewhat difficult. This era of extreme fuel costs, high taxation and overall governmental imbalance is the only way of life that I have ever known, (or at least in the last few years as I have matured enough to understand our present situation). I’ve listened to older Americans of the past two generations who have explained to me how they felt that life was so much easier to get by on so much less. Most feel that the beginning of our recession was due to high fuel costs and too much government.
We are still able to choose how and where we worship, although our country seems to be steering from the Christian religious freedom it was founded on. Citizens are still able to have “ free speech” to some extent, and at present we still have our second amendment, the “right to bear arms”, but most importantly to vote. We as Americans are at least fortunate enough not to have our every activity and way of life monitored and reported on by some power of government above us.
In closing I pray through God’s will that the freedom we possess in the right to vote can make immediate change in our present leadership in our national government. I also believe that individual states, counties, and municipalities will be given more right to govern themselves with much less federal control. By saying this, I intend to register to vote as a Republican on my 18th birthday on may 3rd. I would like to thank you for considering me for this scholarship and can promise that any funds obtained will be wisely used. So if you ask me anytime if I’m proud to be an American? My answer would be without a doubt…… Yes!!!