Madison Lietz was selected as the 2024 Distinguished Young Woman of Keizer at the 50th Anniversary program on April 29.
“It’s really surreal,” Lietz said. “I didn’t think I would get overall because I don’t have a 4.0 GPA. But it just shows that even if you don’t have the best time in high school you can still achieve things. I’m super excited and super honored.”
Lietz was one of five participants at Saturday’s show, where the high school juniors competed in personal expression, fitness and talent. Also taken into account prior to the showcase were their academics and an interview with the judges.
The most challenging portion of the evening for Lietz was the fitness routine because she said she had never been on stage or learned a routine to a dance song.
“Once I kind of got the kinks worked out it became really fun,” Lietz said.
The next step for Lietz will be the state showcase, and from there possibly nationals in Alabama.
“I’m really looking forward to meeting the other girls,” Lietz said. “Just doing the local program I’ve already made such a sisterhood bond and so many new friends. It’s just so exciting.”
The 2023 Oregon Distinguished Young Woman representative in Alabama was Keizer’s Kiele Jarnagin.
Jarnagin and Anna Sponable represented Keizer for the 2023 class, and both were on stage at Saturday’s 2024 showcase. They played the role of host, and got to perform.
Jarnagin performed If You Hadn’t but You Did from Two on the Aisle, while Sponable sang Just Keep Moving the Line from Smash.
The 2024 showcase performances included music, dance and poetry.
Lietz performed an original poem that spoke to her love of journalism.
Betzy Macedonio also performed an original poem, looking at her role of big sister. Adriann Durkin performed on the clarinet, while Siosi ‘Uta’atu and Dayanara Salvador each performed cultural dances.
‘Uta’atu performed a traditional Hawaiian dance, and Salvador a Mexican folklore dance.
“It’s the different women that bring something different to the table every year that amazed me the most,” Distinguished Young Women of Keizer Program Chair Fatima Falcon said.