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2024 Claire Friedlander Foundation Upstander Award: Samuel Davis First Place Winner!

On May 20, Samuel Davis (grade 11) was presented with a 1st place award and $5000 educational scholarship in the category of Suffolk County High Schools at the 14th Annual Upstander Awards at Westbury Manor. These awards were presented on behalf of the Holocaust Memorial & Tolerance Center of Nassau County and the Claire Friedlander Foundation. Samuel was nominated by his Lloyd Harbor sixth grade teacher Kevin Craine, who attended the ceremony and expressed his pride, noting that this award doesn’t even touch upon the degree of impact Samuel has made.
Mr. Craine shared, “I was inspired to nominate him after being introduced to the award following a presentation in Smithtown (where I am a school board trustee) by the Nassau County Holocaust Memorial Center. Bernie Furshpan, who is a second-generation Holocaust survivor, was the presenter that day. Samuel was an integral member of my classroom and our school community at Lloyd Harbor School where he consistently exemplified the “HIKER” values that our school embraced. He agreed that a community should be built upon Honesty, Inclusivity, Kindness, Empathy, and Respect for all. Samuel made every student in my classroom feel included, accepted and valued every day. Throughout his life, Samuel has volunteered his own time to help those in need, volunteering and organizing campaigns to raise money to help the families affected by tragedy, prejudice and hate. Through his actions, he has inspired others to devote their own time and energy to philanthropic causes. Samuel is the true epitome of what it means to be an upstander and a role model for others. He believes in a just world, where all people are entitled to basic human rights. He believes that we need to take action when we see injustice, even when it's easier to look the other way. Samuel has already made a mark in this world, and by awarding him the Friedlander Upstander Award, you will only add to Samuel’s drive to make our world a better place.”
The Friedlander Foundation was established by Claire Friedlander, a Holocaust Survivor, whose life was saved by people who took a stand against prejudice. This award honors her life and embodies her legacy, and the Foundation is proud to support young Upstanders who change our world for the better. The Foundation defines an “Upstander” as a person who stands up for others and does not stand by allowing bigotry, hatred, or intolerance to happen without interjection. Samuel has made a difference in his school and community, with the understanding that no act is too small to inspire change. He is an exemplary role model through his daily actions and has made a difference effecting change not only on the local level, but overseas as well. High School Principal Daniel Danbusky extended his congratulations to Samuel on his remarkable achievement on his nomination and win. “It's truly a testament to his character and the positive impact he's had within our school community, and certainly a reflection to the values that have been instilled in him by his parents. This recognition speaks volumes about his outstanding qualities as a student and a leader.” We congratulate you, Samuel Davis!
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