Photo: (L-R) Old Mission Rotary LEAD chairperson, Lydia Stewart; students Nathan Skowrenski, Bill Champion, Ashay Madden, and Morgan Gurrola; Jean Farb Middle School Principal Courtney Rizzo and AVID instructor, Donna Rankin.
On January 9, 2018, Old Mission Rotary Club was thrilled to welcome the LEAD students from Jean Farb Middle School in Tierrasanta.  The club's LEAD chairperson, Lydia Stewart, convinced the club directors to fund not two, but four eighth graders to the Rotary leadership event.  The LEAD (Leadership, Ethics, Aspirations & Determination) Conference is a leadership and personal development program for 8th grade students that has been held annually since 2009.  Talented young people attend a two-day (Saturday and Sunday) camp developed, presented and hosted by the Rotarians of District 5340.  LEAD encourages young people to discuss ethical responsibility, improve leadership and communication skills, become self-motivated to reach goals and develop a positive outlook on life; all while having fun making friends.  This year's event took place at the Cuyamaca Outdoor School over the weekend of October 13 and 14, 2017. 
Jean Farb Middle School has participated in LEAD for many years and is supported strongly by Principal, Courtney Rizzo and AVID Advisor, Donna Rankin.  The school is small with only 450 students that include many children who live in the Murphy Canyon Navy Housing complex.  These kids come and go as their military families are transferred.  Jean Farb Middle School is particularly proud of their AVID program, a college readiness program designed to help students develop the skills they need to be successful in college.  Old Mission Rotary was both charmed and impressed by the four students who each took a few minutes to talk about their experiences at LEAD.