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Davis Journal

City Council honors local student for his community spirit

Dec 29, 2022 08:30AM ● By Alisha Copfer

FARMINGTON—During the city council meeting on Nov. 15, Sam Williams, a Vista Education student, was recognized by the mayor and received an award. This “Outstanding Student Award” is part of a movement by the council to be more positive.

“This is something we are trying to inject into our meetings as a little positivity and to showcase some of the talents and skill sets of our residents,” said Mayor Brett Anderson.

His mother and father escorted Sam to the podium, where he received this distinguished recognition from the council. The mayor stated that Sam is the second person to receive this honor, and they are excited to continue these efforts.

Starting in October, the city council has requested nominations from the Farmington schools for students worthy of this award. Sam received four of the five nominations.

Sam is a first-year student at the Vista Education Center in Farmington. “Vista is a very nice school, and they treat me well,” said Sam. “I also have really good friends there.”

Every Monday and Tuesday, he volunteers at Farmington Jr. High, where he enjoys helping in the front office. According to Sam, his favorite thing is to answer the phones and redirect calls.

“I like going to the job site and helping out in the community,” said Sam. This is a remarkable feat considering that Sam is blind. He likes to greet guests at the school and answer phone calls. He also uses the intercom system to call students out of class. 

“It has been such a great experience having Sam in our office at Farmington Jr.,” said Aleece Bean, office secretary. “He is always excited to begin the day. His happy attitude is contagious. He has been willing to learn and adapt to any situation. I am proud of his hard work.”

Anderson said that Sam is so deserving of this award for two reasons. First, he is always so happy, and second, he is always willing to tackle mornings with energy and enthusiasm. “Your enthusiasm and happiness are contagious,” said Anderson to Sam. “You’re like the happy version of COVID!”

“People are always happy to see him, and it amazes them that Sam always recognizes their voices,” said Curtis Williams, Sam’s father.

Camilla Williams, Sam’s mother, concurs. “He is very happy and friendly and loves to introduce himself to new people,” she said. Sam’s two brothers and sister were also there when Sam received his award. All three agreed that Sam’s happiness is contagious.

“Sam is kind to others, very helpful and likes chocolate!” said Rosanne (Rose) Uffens, secondary school secretary, in her nomination. “He likes learning new things and trying to do them by himself. His abilities are amazing. We have learned so much from him about being kind and persevering, and he’s taught us about braille. He has been a great addition to our office.”

Anderson said that the city has their own copy of the award to display in city hall. “So, you’re famous now,” he said. 

In his spare time, Sam enjoys listening to music, playing the piano and swinging, “but not in the snow,” said Sam jokingly.