Jaden Tompkins – New Lebanon CSD 2021 Valedictorian
Congratulations to Jaden Tompkins, the New Lebanon Class of 2021 Valedictorian. Tompkins, son of Peter and Jennifer Tompkins of East Nassau, will graduate with a Regents Diploma with Advanced Designation with Honors and an Annotation of Mastery in Math and Science. He has been on the high honor roll throughout his high school years and received multiple academic honors. He attended the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Conference, Leadership Conference at the College of St. Rose, and most recently, was among the 35th Annual Capital Region Scholars Recognition Recipients awarded by CASDA. Jaden has been a volunteer for the after-school program at Walter B. Howard Elementary School and worked as summer camp counselor for the New Lebanon Summer Youth Program and at Blueberry Hill Market & Café in New Lebanon. He has been a member of the Varsity Volleyball and Archery teams, and participated in Tech Club, Future Cities and All County Senior and Jazz Choirs. Jaden will attend Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the fall and hopes to pursue electrical engineering or computer science. He enjoys solving problems and is interested in people, things or ideas that advance the human race. “We’re at the resource level where we can get everyone at least a basic level of food, a basic level of housing,” he said. Summing up how he approaches life, Jaden noted, “More than grades and economics, I like to focus on being a good person over achievements – how you act with other people is more important than what you achieve.”
Sasha Truax – New Lebanon CSD 2021 Salutatorian
Congratulations to Sasha Truax, the New Lebanon Class of 2021 Salutatorian. Truax, the daughter of Neal Truax and Heather and Brian Naventi (step father) of New Lebanon, will graduate with a Regents Diploma with Advanced Designation with Honors and an Annotation of Mastery in Science. Sasha has been on the high honor roll throughout high school and is the recipient of multiple awards, including the Choral Achievement Award, Excellence in Geometry, Rookie of the Year (swim team), Musicians MVP Award and Williams College Book Award. She has played percussion and tenor saxophone in Jazz band, and participated in All County Concert Band, Senior Choir, All County Choir and Jazz Choir, among others. She has worked as senior counselor at Flying Deer Nature Center, East Chatham; water safety instructor for New Lebanon Continuing Education, Shatford Pool; and filled in as a church pianist. Sasha has done volunteer work with Boy Scouts of America and assisted in wetlands conservation by planting trees. She has also participated in competitive carriage driving, sheepdog training and falconry. Sasha will attend Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam in the fall and says she would like to go into music education. Having taught piano lessons, she says she enjoys the problem-solving aspect of helping students figure out what it is they’re struggling with. She explained, “That moment, when they get it – the accomplishment – I really like being able to help someone get that.” She added, “My inspiration is all of the teachers that I’ve interacted with and those that I’ve gotten to teach.”
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