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Billy Michal, Anthony Nguyen

Award namesake Billy Michal (left) and award recipient Anthony Nguyen, a Lincoln North Star graduate.

The National World War II Museum in New Orleans has named local student Anthony Nguyen, a Lead Up Lincoln senior leader and 2019 graduate of Lincoln North Star High School, as a 2019 Billy Michal Student Leadership Award recipient.

The national honor is awarded annually to one student in every state who has maintained a strong record of volunteerism, demonstrates school and community activism, and helps implement creative solutions to recognized problems.

The leadership award, which the museum first presented in 2017, was created in honor of Billy Michal, who was a child living in Louisiana during WWII. At only 6 years old, Michal helped his one-room school win a statewide scrap paper collection contest during the war, proving that every citizen could contribute to victory. Michal’s achievement demonstrated the positive impact the American spirit could have on the Home Front war efforts, and he continues to inspire students across America today.

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Nguyen was nominated by Julie Allen, founder and CEO of Lead Up. He plans to become an educator, his dream since middle school, and looks forward to empowering his students to transcend traditional roles and stereotypes that limit their potential.

Over his high school years, Nguyen has shared his time and talent helping young children, participating in a multicultural pre-service teacher program, and distributing food to families struggling with food insecurity. He is also a Lead Up senior leader, and in that capacity serves as a college-bound role model at his high school, planning college preparation activities for his peers. Nguyen will attend the University of Nebraska.

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