The Sycamore Education Foundation (SEF) is pleased to announce a new scholarship opportunity that will be available to Sycamore High School students in the graduating class of 2020. The Sycamore High School class of 1978 has established the Joel Strack Memorial Scholarship to honor the life and work of their fallen classmate.
Strack was born and raised in Sycamore, Illinois and graduated from Sycamore High School in 1978. He was a Midwest farm boy who became a “trailblazer” for the LGBTQ community in Orlando. He co-founded the Orlando Gay Chorus and helped to launch Orlando’s pride parade. Strack also worked for Walt Disney World for three decades where he helped organize the first unofficial “Gay Day” there and later supporting its expansion.
“Joel was a true leader and mover in his community, and someone who used his talents with joy and passion. The SHS class of 1978 wanted to celebrate his life and achievements by helping future leaders, and those gifted in music and theater, to achieve their dreams, too,” said Dawn Lyons-Dean, Executive Director of the Joel Strack Memorial Scholarship.
There will be two $250 scholarships for this year. One will go to a student who demonstrates a high level of leadership in the community and the other will go to a student who has a passion for the performing arts.
“We are so grateful for the generosity of the class of 1978. It is so touching to see that Joel’s life and legacy will live on through the Sycamore students that will be positively impacted by these scholarships,” said Lauren Holtz, SEF Executive Director.
Sycamore students can apply for these scholarships by accessing the application forms through the Naviance system. Those interested in contributing to the Joel Strack Memorial Scholarship, can donate by writing a check to the Sycamore Education Foundation 245 W. Exchange Street Sycamore, IL 60178 or directly through the SEF website. Please note the Joel Strack Memorial Scholarship under “Tribute Name”.