Sonoma Valley High School Senior Ava Ronglien was one of 10 Sonoma County high school students, out of 122 finalists, to be recognized for leadership and volunteer work at the 31st annual Community Youth Service Awards event, which was sponsored by The Press Democrat.

Ava, whose award is for Journalism and Media, has an undeniable devotion to shedding light on social issues and believes journalism is an important way to do it.

Ava's quest to make a positive impact is already in progress. She has traveled extensively to raise social awareness, going to Central America as a volunteer with Seeds of Learning, a Sonoma-based nonprofit organization dedicated to providing education to children in Latin America. She also worked at the Washington, D.C. "March for our Lives" movement as a student journalist. Back at home, Ava is an editor at at the SVHS student newspaper Dragon’s Tale, for which she has written about delicate social issues such as gun control, immigration and sexual assault. She is also president of two SVHS clubs: the Empowerment club and Seeds of Learning, a community service club.

Northeastern University is Ava's next destination, where she hopes to write for the school's student-run newspaper.

Well-deserved, Ava!