Skip to main navigation.

2019 Youth Tour Winners


Texoma students who participated as finalists in SWRE’s 2019 Youth Tour Contest are: (back, l to r) Mia Aleman, Chillicothe HS; Lindsey Sawin Texas runner-up, Northside HS; Maci Sanders, Snyder HS; Paula Hickerson, Snyder HS.  Other finalists are (front, l to r) Chris Lopez, Oklahoma runner-up, Frederick HS; Bethany Gilstad, Navajo HS; Lily Anne Newell, Texas winner, Chillicothe HS; Zac Chitwood, Oklahoma winner, Tipton HS.  Photo by Jennifer Grice.



Lily Anne Newell of Chilliocthe High School and Zac Chitwood of Tipton High School have been named winners of Southwest Rural Electric Association’s 2019 Youth Tour Contest.

As Youth Tour winners, Lily Anne and Zac will receive all-expense-paid trips to Washington, D.C. this summer with delegations of other co-op students from their respective states.

Lily Anne is the daughter of Amy Potts of Chillicothe.

Zac is the son of Tony & Gail Chitwood.

During their trip to Washington, D.C., the two Texoma youth will visit the U.S. Capitol, Mount Vernon, the capital city’s many memorials and museums, and Arlington National Cemetery. They will also have the opportunity to visit with numerous elected officials.

Runners-up in the contest are Chris Lopez, Frederick High School, and Lindsey Sawin, Northside High School. Chris is the son of Arcadio and Frances Lopez, Frederick. Lindsey is the daughter of Lynn and Brice Sawin, Vernon.

As runners-up, Chris and Lindsey will have the opportunity to represent SWRE at the 2020 high school Touchstone Leadership Summit to be held next spring in Oklahoma City.

Other 2019 contest finalists were Maci Sanders, Snyder High School, daughter of Mandi Hefner; Paula Hickerson, Snyder High School, daughter of Paul and Teresa Hickerson; Mia Aleman, Chillicothe High School, daughter of Paula Aleman; Bethany Gilstad, Navajo High School, daughter of Michelle and Gregory Gilstad.

SWRE also recognized three semi-finalists: Kade parsons, Tipton High School, son of Sonya and Donald Parsons; Ryan Knowles, Chillicothe High School, daughter of Misty and Erik Knowles; Kaziah Crane, Frederick High School, daughter of Lorena Johnson.  Each semi-finalist received $50 as a prize.

All finalists received certificates and $250 cash prizes.

The SWRE Youth Tour Contest is open each year to all 11th grade students who live or attend school in the SWRE service area.

Students were required to research and write a 500-750-word essay on the topic of “Power for the Future.” Nine contest finalists were chosen based on their essays. Eight finalists presented their essays as extemporaneous speeches at a dinner held Thursday evening, February 7, at SWRE headquarters in Tipton. A panel of judges determined contest winners based on the presentations.

The annual SWRE Youth Tour Essay Contest for high school juniors is an annual tradition that began in 1964.

Contest essays were received this year from students in thirteen Texoma schools.


Powered by Touchstone Energy Cooperatives Logo