Eight young women have stepped forward to play a leadership role as White Rock Youth Ambassadors this year.
They’ll be vying for the crown of Miss White Rock – and also two princesses and White Rock friendship ambassador – at the annual awards night gala, Friday at 7 p.m. at Coast Capital Playhouse.
The royalty – each sponsored by local businesses – will represent the city at many functions throughout the year, as well as travelling with other members of the ambassador team to promote White Rock at out-of-town events.
First up will be appearances at this weekend’s Sea Festival, including Sunday’s torchlight parade on Marine Drive at 9 p.m.
Tickets to the gala are $25, including dessert and coffee, and are available by calling Debbie Ward at 604-538-2780 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
(Peace Arch News)
Annie Lu is a Semiahmoo Secondary student who was born in Taiwan.
The 16-year-old has two siblings – Ariel, who was crowned a White Rock Princess last year, and Leo, her brother. A trumpet player in her Grade 10 combo, she is also a pianist at Grade 7 and 8 Royal Conservatory level. She is interested in a career as a high school band teacher, or, alternatively, working as an optometrist.
She speaks both Mandarin and English and some French, and is currently studying Korean and Japanese.
When not at school, delivering papers for Peace Arch News or tutoring other students, she enjoys biking, drawing, knitting, playing basketball and participating in dance competitions.
(White Rock Elks Lodge #431)
Audrey Woo is a 16-year-old Semiahmoo Secondary student with dual Canadian and U.S. citizenship, who plans to study at the University of California San Diego.
She has two brothers, Benson and Harrison (a former Youth Ambassador).
A Semiahmoo Strings member, she is currently at Grade 10 level in Royal Conservatory violin. She works at Michiko Ito Japanese Restaurant.
Fluent in English and Mandarin, she also speaks some Spanish and participates in the school’s Globalizers club. As well as volunteering at Richmond Nature Park and Richmond Animal Shelter, she also enjoys rugby, swimming and snowboarding.
(Seung Ri Academy)
Claire Yen, 16, is due to graduate from Elgin Park Secondary next year and plans to attend university.
A pianist, violinist and flautist, she teaches violin at Elgin and belongs to the school’s World Vision Club.
Keen on drawing, writing and reading, she volunteers with Semiahmoo Library’s Teen Library Council.
(CARP – A New Vision)
Grace Lo is an International Baccalaureate student at Semiahmoo Secondary, where she also plays trombone in the school’s jazz band.
The 16-year-old, one of five girls, speaks English and mandarin and would like to study medicine.
A rugby player – but currently sidelined due to an injury – she also enjoys listening to music, reading and writing.
Elgin Park Secondary student Kana Saarni would like to attend university and then follow a career in the film industry.
The 16-year-old, who has a younger brother, was a keen participant in Elgin’s Orca Players, both running the box office and helping backstage.
Fluent in both English and Japanese, she is also a member of her school’s Peer Leadership council, PROUD (People Reaching Out for Unity and Diversity) and the Elgin Park Model United Nations. She also sings with White Rock Children’s Choir and enjoys performing in musical theatre productions, while still leaving time for three other hobbies, reading, knitting and photography.
(Royal Canadian Legion White Rock Branch #8)
Kitty Sun, 16, is an Elgin Park Secondary student who aims to attend either UBC, McGill or University of Toronto, studying to become a dentist or orthodontist.
A speaker of English and Mandarin, she has one younger brother. Among her volunteer credits are work for BC Children’s Hospital, the Cycle For ER project, White Rock’s Canada Day celebrations, while she is also employed as a tutor in Kumon (math skills).
Extracurricular activities include student council, executive committee peer council leadership and the Model United Nations. Her hobbies include playing piano (she is at Royal Conservatory Grade 8 level), sketching and painting. On a more athletic level, she enjoys lifeguarding, rugby and ultimate sports.
(White Rock Tourism)
Sydney McDuff, currently a student at Earl Marriott Secondary, plans to study nursing after graduating next year.
The 16-year-old, who has one older sister, is also an enthusiastic volunteer at the Rosemary Care Centre for movie nights and bingo for residents, and at Peace Arch Hospital’s emergency department where she has worked on patient surveys.
A member of her school’s student government, she also writes as a hobby, while her athletic accomplishments include playing tennis and swimming, for which she has won a bronze medallion and a bronze cross.
(White Rock Players)
New Westminster-born Tia Berezan, 16, has three younger siblings. While she plans to go to university for both a bachelor’s and master’s degree, she is also interested in acting, which she studied with Surrey Youth Theatre Company and the Tarlington Training Professional Acting School, as well as training in both Royal Conservatory piano and voice.
Her hobbies include photography and writing and she also plays soccer and involved in a competitive swim club. She has played piano for residents of the Morgan Care Home, in addition to volunteering in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside for The Door is Open project.