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Oklahoma Students Win Be Smart-Don't Start! Contest

Fifth-year awareness program encourages children, adults to be tobacco free

TULSA, Okla., May 15 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Jared McNally, a third grader at Anderson Elementary in Sand Springs, Okla., and Magethsi Soria, a fifth grader at Rancho Village Elementary in Oklahoma City, each will produce their own 30-second TV public service announcements (PSAs) about the dangers of tobacco use. McNally and Soria's drawings and narratives were chosen from more than 2,200 entries across the state in the Be Smart-Don't Start! tobacco storyboard contest for students, grades kindergarten through fifth. McNally and Soria, eastern and central/western Oklahoma grand prize winners respectively, will have their PSAs shown on television throughout the summer to teach their peers why they shouldn't smoke. The PSAs will feature animated versions of the children's artwork and their own voices reading their narratives. Winning entries can be viewed online at

The program is co-sponsored by the American Lung Association of Central States Serving Oklahoma, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma, Cox Communications, the Oklahoma State Department of Education and the Oklahoma State Department of Health.

Eighteen more students were chosen as winners in their divisions:

Eastern Oklahoma Winners:

K - 1st Grade Category

1st Place Aubrey Brown Maryetta Elementary, Stilwell

2nd Place Stone Daniels Liberty Elementary, Sallisaw

3rd Place Kolbe Booker Home schooled, Muskogee

2nd - 3rd Grade Category

1st Place Plizia Bishop Maryetta Elementary, Stilwell

2nd Place Giovanni Jaquez Madill Elementary, Madill

3rd Place Nicole Murphy Vian Elementary, Vian

4th - 5th Grade Category

1st Place Molli Provine Jenks Southeast Elementary, Tulsa

2nd Place Roxy Don McDaniel Harmony Elementary, Atoka

3rd Place Kia Manners Will Rogers Elementary, Vinita

Central/Western Oklahoma Winners:

K - 1st Grade Category

1st Place Sarah Scott Centennial Elementary, Edmond

2nd Place Payton Godlewski Northern Hills Elementary, Edmond

3rd Place Macy Waddell Newcastle Elementary, Newcastle

2nd - 3rd Grade Category

1st Place Joshua Hill Surrey Hills Elementary, Yukon

2nd Place Tori Brawner Centennial Elementary, Arcadia

3rd Place Michael Chavez John Glenn Elementary, Oklahoma City

4th - 5th Grade Category

1st Place Brooke Kephart Canton Elementary, Canton

2nd Place Luke Lile Gilmour Elementary, Kingfisher

3rd Place MacKenzie Hill Newcastle Elementary, Yukon

The students will be honored at an awards ceremony at 3:30 p.m., May 22, in the fourth floor rotunda of the state capitol building in Oklahoma City. The event will feature State Superintendent Sandy Garrett, Margaret Crump, senior vice president of community initiatives, American Lung Association of Central States Serving Oklahoma, and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma President Bert Marshall. Cox Communications and SYGMA, a food service distribution company in Pryor, will present teachers of winning students with gift certificates for school supplies. All award winners will receive a medal and a monetary award.

SOURCE Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma
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