57th commencement ceremony held

Published 11:00 am Thursday, June 8, 2023

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The crowd at Kenston Forest School on Saturday, June 3 learned about history, bowed for prayer and heard from some of the top honors graduates during its 57th commencement ceremony. The event took place on Larry Clary Field at the school, with 32 seniors receiving diplomas from Kenston Forest Head of School Lori Bacon and Charles Butts, President of the Lunenburg-Nottoway Educational Foundation. Eight of those who received degrees Saturday were second or third generation Kavaliers.

At the top of the class were Jesse Rimon, Mackenzie Newcomb and Sophia Crowder. Each were recognized as the school’s top three honors graduates and given roles in Saturday’s event.

Rimon served as this year’s historian, sharing the history of the Class of 2023. This fall, he will be attending the University of Virginia and graduates from Kenston Forest School having earned an Associate in Arts & Science degree from Southside Virginia Community College and an Associate in Science – Mathematics Specialization from Northern Virginia Community College. At Kenston Forest, he served as the Student Government Association President, as a member of the Scholastic Bowl, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, National Honor Society, robotics team, and Rotary Interact. He also served as a class treasurer and was on the golf team. Rimon is the son of Dr. and Mrs. Desi Rimon of South Hill.

Newcomb was named salutatorian, the second-highest honor graduate rank, for the Class of 2023. She will be attending Averett University, where Newcomb plans to continue her softball career. At Kenston Forest, she served as the KFS Fellowship of Christian Athletes Co-President, Senior Class Treasurer, and Treasurer of the National Honor Society. She was also a member of the Rotary Interact Club, participated in volleyball and softball, earning VCC All-Academic and 1st Team All-Conference in both sports. And she was recently awarded VISAA 1st Team All-State in softball. Newcomb is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Bobby Newcomb of Victoria.

Crowder meanwhile, earned valedictorian of this year’s class, a title given to the senior ranking first among honors graduates. Crowder plans to attend the University of Virginia in the fall, having graduated with an Associate in Arts & Science degree from Southside Virginia Community College.

Crowder also leaves with one of the most selective merit scholarships in the nation. The Jefferson Scholars Foundation at the University of Virginia selected this Kenston Forest School senior as one of 38 recipients of the Jefferson Scholarship. During her time at Kenston Forest, Crowder was a member of the National Honor Society, Scholastic Bowl team and Speak Up Club. She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jimmie K. Crowder, Jr. of South Hill.


Other members of the Class of 2023 were honored during Saturday’s ceremony. The Robert Allen Quicke and Bolling Quicke Scott Sportsmanship Award went to Asa Murry, while the Kenston Forest School Alumni Scholarship was given to Hanna Mahaney. The Marian Anzolut/Martha Hoefler Memorial Scholarship went to Ellie Long, with Mackenzie Newcomb receiving the Adam Bryant Memorial Scholarship, Sophia Crowder being given the Carl Burton Schwabenton Memorial Scholarship and the N. Burton Allen Distinguished Graduate Award going to Jesse Rimon.

Crowder, Janeva Hutcheson, Asa Murry, Jesse Rimon and Tyler Turman all received an associate degree from SVCC. Rylee Wilkerson earned a Certificate of General Studies from SVCC.