West Broward High School Cadet wins Broward County Cadet of the Year for 2022-2023

Submitted by: LTC (R) Kenneth Green
Photo by: LTC (R) Kenneth Green

On May 18, 2023, Broward county celebrated it’s 21st Annual “SUPERINTENDENT’S JROTC CADET OF THE YEAR/PASS IN REVIEW at Pompano Beach HS.

Congratulations to Cadet Colonel Emily Diaz, from West Broward High School for winning the Broward County Cadet of the Year for 2022-23. The remaining top finishers were runner up Cadet Guino Pierre, Boyd Anderson Military Academy, Distinguished Cadets Christian Briceno from Pompano Beach, Alexander Villalobos from South Broward, Brianna Figueroa from Monarch, Isaac Cespedes from Nova and Alexa Allen from Cypress Bay High Schools. In all, the top seven finishers received scholarships in a value of $10,000!

The Junior ROTC partnership between the United States Department of Defense and the Broward County School Board is completing its 49th YEAR, and to date, has involved over 200,000 Junior ROTC Cadets.

This school year JROTC experienced Cadet enrollment in excess of 6,000 students in JROTC programs sponsored by all four branches of the military. As of today Broward County JROTC is the largest school district in the nation with JROTC in every traditional high school. The Junior ROTC programs have the mission of motivating young students to become better citizens. Today’s awardees are indicative of the success of that mission in Broward County. This ceremony recognized 31 Cadets, one from each high school in the county who competed for the designation of The Broward County JROTC Cadet of the Year. These “best of the best” Cadets received the prestigious Superintendent’s Award-of-Excellence from School Board Member Debra Hixon and the Director of Athletics and Student Activities Shawn Cerra. The Cadets were evaluated on their academic performance, demonstrated leadership, community service, school involvement, as well as their JROTC participation. Those Cadets were officially designated as BROWARD COUNTY’S OUTSTANDING CADETS FOR SCHOOL YEAR 2022-2023.

During the Ceremony School Board Member Ms. Debra Hixon and the Director of Athletics and Student Activities Shawn Cerra provided congratulatory comments to the recipients. Cadets from Western High School Cadets Nicholas Marin and Sohia Perez, narrated the entire ceremony with Cadet Valor Rios singing a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem. Cadet Ayden Perkins, from Boyd Anderson High School, served as the Commander of Troops. Ms. Loretta Young, President for the Broward County JROTC Support Association, provided $10,000 in scholarships to the top finishers.

The event was truly a celebration of leadership educational success in Broward County.