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Sean Patrick French 2007 Scholarship Winners Announced

Six Columbia County college-bound high school runners and two from the Capital District have been selected to receive awards from the Sean Patrick French Memorial Scholarship Fund. The scholarship fund, established from the proceeds of the inaugural Sean’s Run in 2002, has benefited 34 students from Columbia County and the Capital District. Sean’s Run, the annual community run/walk conducted at Chatham high school, attracted 756 entries last year and this year is scheduled for Sunday, April 29.

The six Columbia County students, all varsity Track & Field and/ or Cross Country runners, will all receive the Sean Patrick French “Love of Running” Scholarship. Each submitted an essay describing how participation in the sport has prepared them for the challenges of college and all were recommended by their coach. A 5-person panel convened by the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation selected the winners following a review of all applications

The recipients of $500 awards include Julie Nabozny, Rachel Wright, Richard Messineo and Josh Gilly who will all graduate from Ichabod Crane, Allison Connor from Hudson High School and Sam Streeter from Chatham High School.

Two other seniors, from Section II, have been selected to receive the Sean Patrick French “Good Sports” Scholarships. $500 will be awarded to Brian Rhodes-Devey from Guilderland High School and to Cara Sprague from Queensbury

Two more scholarships, $1,000 each to a boy and girl, will be awarded in June to Chatham High School seniors. Applications are available at the Chatham High School guidance Office. Last year, Chatham seniors selected were Jordon Nieto and Michael West. Past Chatham High recipients include Kristen Lill, James Crannell, Jessica Oehlke, Ricky Dunbar, Meghan Kraham, Andrew Lyons, Teresa Matthews and Adam Nerney.

French, as a 17-year old Chatham High School junior, died as a passenger in an underage drunk driving car wreck on January 1, 2002. A plaque displayed at the high school recalls French as an outstanding athlete, community volunteer and honor roll student who ran a record setting 4:18 mile as a sophomore. In his abbreviated career he claimed two second place finishes at state championship cross country and track meets. As a freshman he was the first-ever boy from CHS to have qualified for and competed at the NYS Federation Cross Country Championship, the highest level of schoolboy cross country competition in New York State.

The scholarship fund is administered by the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation and is supported through generous contributions from friends, family, businesses, community members. For more information about Sean’s Run or the Scholarship Fund, visit




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