Recently the Mayor of Katy Bill Hastings met with 17-year old Sophie Spano who was elected a 2019 Texas Bluebonnet Girls State Mayor. Sophie is a Katy resident and a St. John XXIII College Preparatory incoming high school senior.
The meeting of the two Mayors took place on July 2nd, Sophie Spano’s 17th birthday and the day after Mayor Bill Hastings’ July 1st birthday. The event was a surprise for Sophie in celebration of her birthday.
Sophie had the honor to campaign and to be elected Mayor of her City of Nachos at the 75th Texas Bluebonnet Girls State in Seguin, Texas. She presided over tax and ordinance issues. The mayors swapped stories of their respective responsibilities.
The two mayors had breakfast at Snappy’s Café and Grill. “Mayor Spano” was then invited to the Katy City Hall and given a personal tour of Katy City Hall by Mayor Hastings. Sophie was warmly welcomed by the City of Katy’s Assistant City Secretary, Becky L. McGrew and Executive Assistant, Kathy Jo Stewart. On a tour of the City Council, Sophie met Council Member Janet Corte and was invited to sit in the council seats and to attend as a member of the public the next Katy City Council meeting.
Mayor Hastings asked Sophie to stay in touch. After high school graduation, Sophie hopes to study international diplomacy and medicine and she was excited to learn that Mayor Hastings’ son had taken part in the “Doctors Without Borders” program in India.
When asked about her experience by her grandmother, Sophie shared: “It was a dream come true!”
About Texas Bluebonnet Girls State (www.girls-state.org)
From June 15-22, 2019, Sophie represented the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 164 Katy and her high school St. John XXIII College Preparatory by attending the 75th Texas Bluebonnet Girls State program at Texas Lutheran University, Seguin, Texas. St. John XXIII nominated Katherine Crockette, Samantha Miller, Brooke Wrzyszczynski and Sophie Spano. A total of 12 girls from Katy area high schools were selected as Girls State Citizens to join the 596 11th grade girls from high schools all over Texas. Girls State Citizens are chosen to attend by their schools and their local American Legion Auxiliary Unit based on their leadership skills, good citizenship, goal orientation and curiosity about our country’s government process.
Created and run by the American Legion Auxiliary, Girls State is a highly prestigious program carried out every summer in each state. The training is objective and practical. Instead of classroom lectures and textbook review, personal experience is the model used for this experience. The fictional city, county and state governments are operated by the students elected to various offices by their peers. Many women leaders in our country today are Girls State graduates. Higher level schools and colleges recognize graduates as ‘sought after’ enrollees. Even the country’s military academies allow extra points toward admission for Girls State graduates.