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Local News

Dos Pueblos Senior Maddy Matthys Named 2013 Goleta Teen of Year

She is honored for her Mock Trial work, community service and other achievements; San Marcos senior Cole Kurth is selected as runner-up

Dos Pueblos High School senior Madeline “Maddy” Matthys was honored Wednesday night as Goleta Teen of the Year by the Rotary Club of Goleta Noontime for her exceptional Mock Trial team work, community service and many other pursuits.

Matthys was one of seven finalists for the award, which includes scholarship money from the Rotary Club and the Goleta Valley Chamber of Commerce.

San Marcos High School senior Cole Kurth was honored as runner-up. The other finalists were Dos Pueblos seniors Anmole Ahdi, Dayne Gardiner, Colleen Murphy and Arianna Wallis, and San Marcos senior Adrian Rodriguez.

Matthys, 18, is the lead prosecution attorney and lead defense attorney for the school's Mock Trial team and helped organize Mock Trial camps over the summer. Coach Bill Woodard calls her one of the most talented and decorated competitors in the nation, and only the third freshman to ever make the team.

She doesn’t stop there. She also has been involved in the Engineering Academy since she was a freshman and works as the leader of sponsor relations and presentations to help get fundraising and community involvement for the program.

In addition to that, she plays on the varsity tennis team, plays cello in a quartet and has performed scientific research at UC Santa Barbara on a kidney disease project and marine biology project.

Of all her achievements, she said she's most proud of her Mock Trial work and mentoring the Lego-League Robotics team of fourth- and fifth-grade students, but she plans to pursue science in college. She isn't sure where yet, though she has her sights set on Duke University as a top contender.

Goleta Teen finalists
Goleta Teen of the Year finalists, from left, Arianna Wallis, Adrian Rodriguez, Colleen Murphy, winner Maddy Matthys, runner-up Cole Kurth, Dayne Cardiner and Anmole Ahdi take the stage for Wednesday night's presentations. (Giana Magnoli / Noozhawk photo)

She said it was wonderful to be chosen as Teen of the Year and was honored to represent the city of Goleta.

Kurth has a wide range of interests as well, including poetry, theater, Mock Trial, singing and Kids Helping Kids. The nonprofit organization is run by students and helps children in need locally and abroad.

Kurth leads fundraising teams and received a grant of $78,400 from State Farm Insurance to help the program expand.

He’s also the outreach chairman for the AAPLE Academy — the Accelerated Academic Program for Leadership and Enrichment — at San Marcos, tutors students in Santa Barbara’s Westside neighborhood and volunteers at the Unity Shoppe.

His dream is to become a Disneyland Imagineer so he can create rides and other park amenities.

Economics teacher Jaime DeVries, who created Kids Helping Kids 13 years ago, said Kurth has the academic acumen, selfless heart and overall spirit that is willing to conquer any challenge, happily.

Noozhawk staff writer Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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