KAPAA — Jayson Hawthorne, a Kapaa High School senior, has been named a Wendy’s High School Heisman recipient at the school level.
“These students are known by their teachers and friends for their commitment to excellence,” said Daniel Hamada, Kapaa High School principal. “We are excited and honored that a program like Wendy’s High School Heisman is also recognizing their hard work.”
Wendy’s High School Heisman announced both the school and state finalist recipients on Monday. As a school winner, Hawthorne will receive a School Winner certificate and a Wendy’s High School Heisman patch. From the group of state finalists, one senior male and one female will be selected and announced as state winners today.
The Wendy’s High School Heisman was created in 1994 by Wendy’s founder, Dave Thomas. Thomas dropped out of high school at 15 in order to work full time, and went on to become a successful entrepreneur.
He worried that others would follow his footsteps on this nontraditional path to prosperity and expect to achieve similar fame and wealth by not finishing school or attending college. This concern sent him to Coconut Creek High School in Florida at age 61, where he received his General Equivalency Diploma. Inspired by this, and combined with a desire to celebrate the outstanding achievements of youth in America, Thomas launched the Wendy’s High School Heisman program.
More than 600,000 of the nation’s most esteemed high school seniors who share Wendy’s values of giving back to their communities, treating people with respect, continuing education and excelling on the athletic field have been honored in the 22 years since the program started.