Ava Straccia Receives Good Citizen Award from DAR


  The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) presented senior Ava Straccia with the Good Citizen Award. Based out of Norwood, Massachusetts, the Aaron Guild Chapter of the DAR sponsors the award for Walpole High School (WHS) in addition to Blue Hills Regional Technical School, Norfolk Agricultural School, and Norwood High School each year. The student selected must have the qualities of dependability, service, leadership, and patriotism.

  “[Receiving the award] was definitely unexpected,” Straccia said. “I felt very honored to be recognized by my fellow classmates.”

  WHS staff and faculty selected Straccia because she demonstrated these qualities within school and the Walpole community. In school, Straccia is involved in many activities: Speech and Debate, Film Festival, News Team, Student Roundtable, National Honor Society and Drama Club. Outside of school, she participates in Walpole Children’s Theatre (WCT) and Walpole Dance Center.

  “She’s a kind person and a good student who doesn’t just think about herself,” TV Production teacher Peter O’Farrell said. “She’s an all around great person and does whatever needs to be done for the TV program.”

  Even though she is participates in many activities, she still is involved in each one. In the Drama Club’s fall production ‘Cinderella,’ Straccia was the stepmother, and in the upcoming production ‘The Worst High School Play in the World,’ she will be Corsicana.

    “Everything in WCT runs so smoothly because of her. Every little kid in the cast adores her for her outgoing personality, sense of humor, talent and love she has for the shows we do,” junior Emily Tomasetti said.

  Straccia is also Vice President for the Speech and Debate Team and has been on the Executive Board since her sophomore year. At the Holly Tournament in December, she competed in the Pentathlon category, entailing participation in five different events. She placed in four out of the five categories.

  “She is a natural leader who takes novices under her wing and is a friend to everyone,” Speech and Debate Team Coach Emily Murray said. “She is also a powerhouse speechie and excels with comedic pieces. Ava makes it to the final round at most tournaments.”

  Since her sophomore year, she has been a director in the Film Festival, where she has won awards such as Best Picture and Best Supporting Actor for “The Promposal,” and Best Art Direction for “Drivers Ed.” This year, she is directing a movie with Tomasetti about the Film Festival.

  “Ava and I are directing a movie together, and she is definitely one of the strongest directors I’ve seen. She’s extremely organized and personable, very clear and hardworking,” Tomasetti said. “She makes sure everything is where it needs to be in terms of the production, and she’s very dedicated to the film.”

  In the past, WHS alumni Paul Heffernan and John Henry Breen were awarded the Good Citizen Award in 2016 and 2017, respectively, for the same qualities Straccia has shown throughout high school. Straccia plans on applying for the scholarship the DAR offers to Good Citizen recipients. To enter the contest, she must write a letter explaining why she has shown the qualities of a good citizen. She will write an essay about good citizenship in under two hours. If Straccia wins the Aaron Guild Chapter scholarship, her entry will advance through state and national levels of judging.

  “Ava is a great leader,” Film Festival Executive Producer Michael Alan said. “She shows tremendous dedication.”