Mayor Bill Barnett Receives Shining Star Award; Greets Top Readers from Laurel Oak Elementary

Naples Mayor Bill Barnett received K is for Kids’ 7th Annual Shining Star Award recognizing his years of impassioned support for the teen-driven foundation.

Mayor Bill first proclaimed K is for Kids “Bring a Book, Bring a Friend for Children’s Literacy Month” in October 2008. (The literacy month is now celebrated at the height of season each year in February.)

Nedgie Paul was the student spokesperson giving the award to the Mayor. (A top student leader for K is for Kids 2013-15, Nedgie was a Palmetto Ridge High School Graduate of Distinction and now attends Florida State University.)

The award was even more exciting because 47 elementary school children from Laurel Oak Elementary School got to watch.  The youngsters were at Barnes & Noble Booksellers as part of a special field trip to Waterside Shops that commemorated their being the “top readers” at their school.  The event is sponsored by K is for Kids’ popular end-of-year Top Reader Book Awards program.

 The Mayor greeted the students and congratulated them for their reading achievements. After a lively question and answer session, the youngsters gathered around the mayor for a proud moment and photograph.

After shopping for books to take home and keep, the students enjoyed a special complimentary lunch at California Pizza Kitchen.

Congratulations to Mayor Bill and the young honorees!

Mayor Bill Barnett

LOE BN Mayor Bill Barnett and Nedgie FSU offstage

Mayor Bill Barnett waits with Nedgie Paul, student spokesperson for K is for Kids, before he receives his award and addresses students from Laurel Oak Elementary School.

LOE BN Nedgie onstage laughing

Nedgie Paul shares a funny moment with the students before introducing Mayor Bill, as he is affectionately known.


LOE BN Mayor Bill Barnett Receives K is for Kids Shining Star Award surrounded by LOE Top Readers

Mayor Bill Barnett, center, receives K is for Kids’ “Shining Star” award on May 13th, 2016 in recognition of his ongoing support to the foundation since it launched in 2008. The award was given at an event at Barnes & Noble Booksellers in Naples honoring 47 students who had been named as top readers from Laurel Oak Elementary School. The mayor congratulated the students on their achievements before the youngsters began shopping for new books to take home funded by K is for Kids’ end-of-year Top Reader Book Awards program. Adults joining the students: Far left, Nedgie Paul, student spokesperson for K is for Kids and a rising sophomore at Florida State University ; 2nd from left, Jessica Olson, business community relations manager for Barnes & Noble; far right, Lori Myers, media specialist, Laurel Oak Elementary; and 2nd from right, Karen Clawson, founder and executive director of K is for Kids.

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LOE BN Mayor Bill Barnett onstage front view

Mayor Bill congratulates the students on their reading achievements and talks to the kids about what he does as mayor

LOE Mayor Bill 2

The students enjoy a quick Q&A session with the mayor.

Students get to shop for their new books.

Thank you to all those who sponsor K is for Kids Top Readers Book Awards!

foundation logo template 2 pdf

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The Clawson Family


LOE BN girl green dress with Dork diaries with girl in LOE tee - ask Lori if her book is appropriate LOE BN LOE BN 3 Girls 1 Boy with books

LOE BN boys talking about their booksLOE BN Anna and friend with Secret Cookie ClubLOE BN girl and boy with books

See more photos here (come back soon for the link to lots of happy faces!)

Next stop: CPK!

LOE Group at CPK - Lori - kids not looking or blinking 4 just one boy not good - Rich near cut off - 4th Fave 1 - crop left - 1

Laurel Oak Elementary’s 47 reading leaders are full of smiles after enjoying lunch at CPK. Far left, K is for Kids founder and volunteer executive director, far right, Rich Hallas, CPK manager, and 2nd from right, Lori Myers, media specialist.


California Pizza Kitchen –

Laurel Oak honorees fill up the room!

LOE CPK Panorama of dining area full with honorees

LOE CPK Booth of 3 girls 2 boys

LOE CPK Table of 11 - 9 girls 2 boys

LOE CPK Table of 4 girls reading booksLOE CPK Booth of 4 girls 1 boy with 3 reading

LOE CPK Rich Hallas - Melvin Williams - David De Carle

CPK Team making it happen: L-R: Managers Rich Hallas and Melvin Williams wtih General Manager David De Carle.

LOE Group at CPK - kids not looking or blinking 2 - bit blurry - Rich cut out - 2nd Fave 1

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