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Sylvana Meeks: Lifetime Achievement Award


Last updated 1/23/2020 at 10:03am

Griff Lacey

Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient 2019 – Sylvana Meeks

After arriving in Borrego Springs when she was 13, Sylvana Meeks embarked on a journey that turns out to be unmatched in donating one's time and skills to the betterment of our community.

"I think you get a lot more out than what you give," she said. "And it's easy to say 'yes' when you know the community."

Sylvana first said "yes" to joining the Rotary Club in 2005, eventually rising to its President. She has also said "yes" to serving in top positions of many other organizations, including serving on the Board of Directors for each of the following: The Borrego Springs Unified School District, the Borrego Art Institute, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Borrego Valley Endowment Fund.

She was also the Honorary Mayor of Borrego Springs for two years, and the list of her service goes on, all the while being co-owner of the local Coldwell-Banker office. "When I see how beneficial it is for others, and for me as well, it's easy to say yes."

In her senior year at Borrego Springs High School, Sylvana was chosen Miss Borrego 1988, as a result of her innate confidence, ability to communicate effectively, personal charm, and winning personality.

The community organizations she has led or been in, have all benefited from that combination. Of all her accomplishments, serving as the Miss Borrego Pageant Director is admittedly Sylvana's crowning achievement. And she has been able to instill in high school girls many of the same qualities that she herself possesses.

"The pageant provides the contestants life skills such as confidence, public speaking, interviewing skills, and the value of community service," she said. "I feel it's important to guide our young ladies to be strong and confident women." One of Sylvana's focual points for her pageant girls is public speaking.

"If these girls can go up in front of a group (of Pageant contestants) and give a speech they've memorized, look into an audience, and 'work the room,' when they get into college and beyond, public speaking will be much easier one-on one, or in an interview situation where presence and eye contact with individuals and within groups are important skills.

Full article in the Oct. 31 issue of the Borrego Sun.

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