Valedictorian Clarisa Murillo and salutatorian Brandi Leach have the highest grade point averages in their class of 11 students, which will graduate on Friday, June 7 at 6:30 p.m. in the DHS gymnasium. They will both speak at the ceremony.

Dunsmuir High School’s 2019 valedictorian and salutatorian will both take advantage of the “Siskiyou Promise” scholarship to attend College of the Siskiyous next year free of charge.

Valedictorian Clarisa Murillo and salutatorian Brandi Leach have the highest grade point averages in their class of 11 students, which will graduate on Friday, June 7 at 6:30 p.m. in the DHS gymnasium. They will both speak at the ceremony.

Both girls have participated in a plethora of extracurricular activities over their four years at DHS and were recognized for their well-rounded effort at the 41st annual Tiger Awards ceremony last week, when they brought home a combined $8,850 in local scholarships.

“Brandi and Clarisa are two tremendous young women,” said DHS Principal/Superintendent Ray Kellar. “They are focused on their future and will be successful in anything that they put their minds to. Both have been extremely helpful and involved during their high school years as ASB officers and heading up many committees, clubs and activities over the years. Both have participated in athletics and have remained solid students and leaders of their peers. They can always be counted on to follow through and go above and beyond what is asked of them. They have been good sounding boards for me when looking for input, where students are concerned, and both have been our Student Board Representative, Brandi in 18-19 and Clarisa in 17-18. They are well spoken and have sound minds and thought processes. I consider them to be exemplary young people and wish them well as they journey into the future.”

Clarisa and Brandi are members of the National Honor Society, California Scholarship Federation and Upward Bound. They were honored by principal/superintendent Ray Kellar as this year’s Association of California School Administrators selections. They’ve each been named DHS Student of the Year and Student of the Month and they’ve been on honor roll much of their high school careers.

Clarisa grew up in Weed, but moved to Dunsmuir about five years ago. Brandi has lived in Dunsmuir her entire life.

Clarisa is the daughter of Blanca Sanchez. She plans to get her AA and then transfer to a four-year school to study psychology and eventually get a Bachelor’s degree in forensic science. She thanked her boyfriend, Mathew Sheets, for his support.

Brandi, the daughter of Rose and Willis Leach, plans to complete the nursing program at COS with the goal to become a Registered Nurse. She recognized her grandparents, Keith and Lilly Jones, for their support over the years.

Clarisa was the two-time recipient of the Trapnell Leadership Award. She has been the Associated Student Body President for the past two years and plays tennis.

Clarisa was recognized with the $750 Lions Club Scholarship, a $2,000 Dunsmuir Scholarship, and a $100 Dunsmuir Ladies Scholarship during the Tiger Awards.

Brandi received the Zach Swan Memorial Scholarship for $1,000, the Lions Club Scholarship for $1,000, the $1,000 Mercy Medical Center Auxiliary Scholarship, the $500 Railroad Days Scholarship, a $1,500 Dunsmuir Scholarship, and the Shasta Cascade Health Scholarship in the amount of $1,000.

What would they say to students who want to follow in their footsteps?

“Be involved,” said Clarisa. She said she hears other students putting high school down, “but I’ve had a great experience. I’ve had fun making memories.”

Brandi advised students to do their best all four years of high school, because what you do in your freshman and sophomore years affects your GPA.

Clarisa said students at DHS get lots of support. “There’s always someone to turn to, and if they can’t help, they’ll find someone who will,” she said.

Both Brandi and Clarisa said the staff at DHS is helpful and supportive and they’re proud to be Tigers.