Councilman Elvis R. Maldonado, liaison to the Homestead Education Committee, was invited to participate as a judge at the Theodore Gibson Oratorical Competition at Air Base Elementary School on March 6, 2013, and was awarded a certificate of appreciation for his help and support to education. The Theodore Gibson Oratorical Competition exposes students to a breadth of writings about the African American experience and provides them with the opportunity to refine their research, writing, and public speaking skills.
“I am honored to have the opportunity to support a school like Air Base Elementary and Principal Raul Calzadilla Jr.,” said Councilman Maldonado. “The Theodore Gibson Oratorical is a great way for students to sharpen their public speaking skills as they learn about African American history. The winners of this contest should be proud of their wonderful performances. We are honored to have them represent us at the Miami Dade College regional competition this May.”
Judges Vanessa Mixon, a teacher at Air Base Elementary, Program Director Susana Vela, and Speech Pathologist of Baptist Health South Grace Van-Neil were given the challenging task, along with Councilman Maldonado, of selecting the winners from over twenty children who participated in the competition.
In the Primary category first place was awarded to second grader Karsten Chima who read “Hope;” second place went to kindergarten student Jasmine Chima who read “When I Was Little.” In the Intermediate category first place was awarded to third grader Stephany Chima who read “Let It Shine;” and second place went to fifth grader Sophia Martinez who read “We Are All Equal.” These students will go on to the district competition hosted by Miami-Dade County Public Schools and Miami Dade College in May.