Ruddy Mathison, Gleaner Writer
FALMOUTH, Trelawny:THE TRELAWNY Parish Council on Wednesday selected 16-year-old Tiana Ferguson, grade 11 student at Westwood High School, as the 2012 youth mayor for the parish.
Ferguson won from a field of seven other contestants from various high schools in the parish.
Eighteen-year-old Shamere Morris, an upper-sixth form student at Holland High School, was selected deputy youth mayor after being adjudicated second-place winner. Sixteen-year-old Tavanna Harrison, also of Westwood, was third.
The winners were selected based on a 10-minute address on 'My vision for Jamaica for the next 50 years'.
Ferguson, who displayed command of the topic, scored big in the areas of presentation, diction, knowledge, use of time and content, headings under which the competition was adjudicated.
She told The Gleaner she was elated to be selected and lauded her teachers at Westwood for her preparation.
Major sponsors Jamaica Public Service Company, Kencarsa Developers of Holland Estates, Digicel and City Sports presented cash prizes, BlackBerry phones, trophies and certificates to the winners.
The Ministry of Local Govern-ment has allocated $50,000 for the youth mayor to complete a project of her choice. She is also expected to meet with Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller at a date to be announced.
Meanwhile, director of finance at the parish council, Andrew Harrison, who was instrumental in organising the contest, said the event, which started many years ago, is one of the main features of Local Government Month, which is observed in November.
Harrison said it targets students from different high schools in the parish and exposes them to the functions of the parish council and other civic responsibilities, as they prepare to be leaders in their communities.