‘I’m still in shock:’ Rockford Lutheran student wins $1K for poem

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ROCKFORD —Three Rockford Lutheran High School students were in for a surprise last week.



a man talking on a cell phone: Rockford Lutheran junior Ruthie Wriedt reacts as she is announced as winner of the Genevieve B. Taxon grand prize award in the Rockford Woman's Club's 96th annual Creative Writing Contest on Friday, Sept. 3, 2021, at Rockford Lutheran School in Rockford.


© SCOTT P. YATES/ROCKFORD REGISTER STAR
Rockford Lutheran junior Ruthie Wriedt reacts as she is announced as winner of the Genevieve B. Taxon grand prize award in the Rockford Woman’s Club’s 96th annual Creative Writing Contest on Friday, Sept. 3, 2021, at Rockford Lutheran School in Rockford.

They were named finalists in the 96th Annual Rockford’s Woman’s Club Creative Writing contest, according to a news release.

One was selected as the Genevieve Taxon Award grand prize winner, which included a $1,000 cash prize. The other finalists were presented with a certificate and $50.

The school’s teachers and staff helped organize a surprise announcement at the school, 3411 N. Alpine Road. Family was invited.

“I’m shaking, I’m still in shock,” said Ruthie Wriedt, who won the grand prize for a poem she had written.

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The other two finalists at the school were George Roby, chosen for his poetry, and Abigail Daniele, chosen for her prose.

“I’m honestly surprised, I kind of forgot about it until I walked in the room,” Daniele said.

All three submitted their creative writing last spring when they were sophomores. 

More than 140 submissions are entered each year with 10 being chosen as finalists. Student submissions come in from private, public and homeschool students in Rockford. 

Due to the pandemic, the Woman’s Club was unable to host a celebratory luncheon, and the decision was made to to hold a surprise announcement at the school with students and their families.

English teacher Theresa Giamalva believes all of her students are capable of producing creative writing.

“No matter whether you think you’re good at English or that you’re a powerful writer — technically, like grammar — you can still write creatively and beautifully and powerfully," Giamalva said. "Every student has the opportunity to be a powerful creative writer." 



a man holding a glass of wine: The Rockford Woman's Club recognizes Rockford Lutheran High School juniors, from left, Abigail Daniele, Ruthie Wriedt and George Roby in the 96th annual Creative Writing Contest on Friday, Sept. 3, 2021, at Rockford Lutheran School in Rockford. Wriedt won the Genevieve B. Taxon grand prize award worth $1,000.


© SCOTT P. YATES/ROCKFORD REGISTER STAR
The Rockford Woman’s Club recognizes Rockford Lutheran High School juniors, from left, Abigail Daniele, Ruthie Wriedt and George Roby in the 96th annual Creative Writing Contest on Friday, Sept. 3, 2021, at Rockford Lutheran School in Rockford. Wriedt won the Genevieve B. Taxon grand prize award worth $1,000.

Scott P. Yates contributed to this report.

Andrea V. Watson: awatson@rrstar.com@andreavwatson12

This article originally appeared on Rockford Register Star: ‘I’m still in shock:’ Rockford Lutheran student wins $1K for poem

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September 7, 2021 at 06:38AM

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