Chemawa Indian School and Sprague High School Youth Appreciation!

The Optimist Club of Salem met with students, faculty and guests from Chemawa Indian School and Sprague High School on April 20th to celebrate their students’ achievements.  We enjoyed a wonderful meal at the Salem Keizer Career Technical Education Center (CTEC) and got to meet 10 amazing students.  

Below are synopses of each student.

Chemawa Indian School

Evan Cameron

Achievement in Mathematics and Science

Evan Cameron is a member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.  He is a senior and has attended Chemawa Indian School for two years.  He recently placed third in an Algebra II competition for students in the Salem area.  Next year Evan will join the Marines and attend boot camp in San Diego. 

Josef Ezius Chee

Achievement in Fine Arts

Josef Ezius Chee is an artist and part of the White Mountain Apache Tribe in Arizona.  He has studied at Chemawa Indian School for three years.  Ezius shared some of his paintings with our club so members could see his style, which is easy to appreciate.  He also described a large sand painting of beach and sky he has in progress.  Following graduation from Chemawa,  Ezius hopes to pursue his interests by trying to do what he really enjoys doing.

Uriah Nish

Achievement in Vocational Technology

Uriah Nish is a senior.  He is a member of the Tohono O’odham Tribe and travelled from his home in Arizona for all four of his years at Chemawa Indian School.  Next year Uriah will attend the Universal Tech Institute to study auto mechanics.  After one year of learning, he will graduate with a job!


Alexis Hollow Horn

Most Involved in Community Service

Alexis Hollow Horn is a member of the South Dakota Oglala Sioux Tribe and has been very involved in the Chemawa community since her first year when she was president of her dormitory.  During her four years at Chemawa Indian School, she has been involved in too many things to list.  As a senior, she is student body president.  Alexis says she likes to serve others and likes to make sure everyone is having a good time.  Alexis has a passion for medicine and plans to attend Chemeketa Community College or Linn-Benton Community College and then transfer to Oregon State University to study pediatric nursing and plans to train to be a medical examiner, or learn to be a mortician.

Graciella Niedo

Most Improved in Academics

Graciella Niedo is from Arizona.  When she began studying at Chemawa Indian School, her grades were low but she applied herself and turned her GPA around. While at Chemawa, Graciella studied how to make Ribbon Skirts, a part of traditional regalia.  She plans to return to Arizona when she graduates and ask her tribe to provide a location and funding so that she can train other girls to make the skirts.


Buster Logan

Oregon Tribes Graduate

Buster Logan of Siletz, Oregon, is the only graduate from a tribe in Oregon this year. Buster had studied in the Salem public school system prior to attending Chemawa Indian School his senior year.  He said studying at Chemawa has been a great experience and that meeting people from all over the United States has had a strong positive impact on him.  Next year, Buster plans to start studying at Chemeketa with a later goal of studying in the sports psychology program at Oregon State University.

Sprague High School

Savannah Dillon

Achievement in Fine and Performing Arts

Savannah is a senior at Sprague High School and has been lending her vocal talents to choral programs for four years now.  She participates in “Framework,” which is the advanced choral group at the high school.  She is also a leader in Concert Choir and uses her expertise to help lead by example and encourages  others around her. She is a warm, friendly student who has a love for vocal performance and connecting with others.  Savannah is a great singer who brings a super positive attitude to every rehearsal she is in.

Savannah is also very active outside of school with her church where she also provides her choral expertise.  She participates in the youth choir and during Sunday services.  After graduation, Savannah plans to attend Chemeketa Community College to get her prerequisites completed in order to purse a career in accounting or business.


Juliana Fuentes

Involvement in Community Service

Juliana Fuentes is a senior this year at Sprague High School.  In her four years at Sprague, she has been involved in improving many programs that have made a lasting impact on the school.  Juliana has gone above and beyond as Peer Mentor Coordinator this year.  She has been incredibly involved in every Mentor event and been a huge part of the success of the program which connects incoming freshmen students with upperclassmen mentors.  This program creates a sense of community within the school and helps students who may feel out of place or unsure about high school feel important and that they belong.  She also volunteers at elementary schools during the week through Sprague’s mentor program, as well as on her own time.  She has been instrumental in the expansion of Sprague’s Unified Programs such as the Physical Education program and leadership class and activities as well. She has helped manage social media marketing for the program, planned assemblies for the school, and has been involved in fundraising opportunities.  She is a member of the National honors Society as well. 

Juliana displays high amounts of drive and dedication, and always shows initiative in her class.  She is a big impact student who always leaves a room with everyone feeling uplifted and welcomed.  After graduation, Juliana is planning on attending the University of Oregon to study Advertising.

Faith Davidson

Involvement in Community Service

Faith is only a sophomore at Sprague, but is already making a huge difference at the school and with those she interacts with.  She has been instrumental in helping with the expansion of Sprague’s Unified programs such as the physical education program and helps bring the Oly Lounge (the on-campus coffee shop) to life by being everyone’s favorite barista.  She is heavily involved with student council as the Sophomore Spirit Coordinator, and helps with planning assemblies and other school events.  She contributes to the social media and marketing aspects of these events as well.

In her spare time, Faith volunteers weekly at a senior citizen home, which speaks to her remarkable character, her commitment to serve others, and her willingness to give back to the community.  After she graduates, she plans to attend a university—preferable out of state, preferably somewhere warm—to study business, marketing, or advertising.


Hunter Moate

Achievement in Fine and Performing Arts

As a senior, Hunter has been an integral part of the choir program at Sprague High school throughout his high school career.  He is a talented singer and actor, and makes a difference in every rehearsal he attends. He is a vital member of the advanced choir group “Frameworks,” and serves as the Tenor Section Leader in Concert Choir.  He is a dependable student who makes others around him better and can always be counted on to contribute to the best of his ability.  Hunter is the male lead in Sprague’s upcoming production of “Frozen Jr.” and has a newfound love for acting, singing, and being on stage.  He also participates in the CTEC 3D Design Programs.  He is currently working on the Marion County Anti-Vape Campaign Project which is focused on spreading awareness about the dangers of vaping and the harmful impact it can have on a teenager.

In his spare time, Hunter enjoys playing guitar, and learning about virtual reality technology and architecture.  After graduation, Hunter plans on going to Chemeketa for two years to complete prerequisites and then wants to attend Western Oregon University for theater/arts or musical composition.  He also has a desire to continue his involvement in community theater productions while he attends Chemeketa, and plans to be involved with Pentacle Theater and Enlightened  Theatrics. 


Award Photos

Chemawa Indian School Students

Sprague High School Students

Group Photo of all of our honored students