Jim Burnes and Jonesboro Elementary School student Jaley Watkins. Photo provided.

Jonesboro School’s Jaley Watkins receives Burnes Leadership Award

Jaley Watkins of Jonesboro Elementary School was awarded the Southern Illinois Junior High School Athletic Association, SIJHSAA, Jim Burnes Leadership Award for Region 1 on Friday, May 5, at Alongi’s in Du Quoin.

Jaley is the daughter of Brad and Jaime Watkins.

SIJHSAA is one of two organizations in Illinois that sponsor junior high athletics. 

SIJHSAA is made up of over 180 schools throughout Southern Illinois and is divided in to 10 geographical regions. 

The Jim Burnes Leadership award is for 8th graders only and is based on the following criteria: Grade point average of 3.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale, participation in at least two SIJHSAA sports, community activities, specific honors, a typed essay about leadership, and recommendations from inside the school and community.

Each school’s athletic director nominated one person, and they were the winner of the leadership award for their school and received a certificate from the SIJHSAA proclaiming them the Leadership Award winner from their school. 

Those winners then proceeded on to the regional level, where overall regional winners were selected and honored with a plaque and a luncheon honoring their accomplishments. 

The association noted that the winners, as well as all of the applicants for the award, reflect the true meaning of the SIJHSAA motto which states: “Your reputation can be made, or even destroyed in a moment. Your character is developed over a lifetime.”

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158
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