Press Releases

WASHINGTON – Arkansas students Emily Richey and Gable Sloan were named Arkansas’s top volunteers and received the 2017 Prudential Spirit of Community Award, honoring their commitment and dedication to helping others.

Richey, a senior at Paris High School, earned this recognition for creating a nonprofit organization to raise money to purchase therapeutic dolls and stuffed animals for dementia patients.

Richey helped raise more than $13,000 to pay for dolls for nearly 150 patients in eight nursing homes. She worked with the National Alzheimer’s Association to identify the appropriate type of dolls for elderly patients and enlisted the help of her school’s Future Business Leaders of America chapter to raise the money.

Sloan, a sixth-grader at McNair Middle School in Fayetteville earned this recognition for providing funds to charities raised at “Gable’s Bakery,” her nonprofit bakery and catering business. In two years, she has given more than $5,000 to charitable organizations. Additionally she uses a portion of her proceeds to fund a $1,000 scholarship for high school students who have demonstrated a commitment to community service.

Richey and Sloan discussed their projects with U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) during their trip to Washington.

“Emily and Gable’s actions demonstrate their passion for their communities. They are making a lasting impact on the lives of others. This civic engagement is something all Arkansans should be proud of. I am grateful for their service and congratulate them on this recognition,” Boozman said.

The Prudential Spirit of Community Award represents the nation’s largest youth recognition program based exclusively on volunteer community service. The award was created in 1995 by Prudential in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals to honor middle and high school students.