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San Diego County Credit Union® (SDCCU®), San Diego’s largest locally-owned financial institution, is excited to announce that Patrick Garcia of Scripps Ranch High School was named the Best Local Theatre Teacher at the Ben Vereen Awards. The awards ceremony was held May 28 at the Balboa Theatre in downtown San Diego.

“SDCCU congratulates Mr. Garcia for this prestigious achievement. The Best Local Theatre Teacher Award provides the opportunity to recognize talented and hardworking teachers throughout San Diego County. The students competing in the Ben Vereen Awards could never reach their full potential without the invaluable instruction and direction of such teachers,” said SDCCU President and CEO Teresa Halleck.

A total of 18 teachers were nominated and nearly 1,500 votes were submitted in the Best Local Theatre Teacher Awards contest, which ran for a couple of weeks, ending on May 15, 2017 at facebook.com/sdccu. Students, parents, family members and friends were asked to nominate and vote for a deserving drama/theatre teacher who made a positive difference in their life, the life of a child or in the community. As part of the award, SDCCU will send Garcia to New York City to attend the 2017 Jimmy Awards, also known as the National High School Musical Theatre Awards®.

The Best Local Theatre Teacher Award is part of the 2017 Ben Vereen Awards, sponsored by SDCCU and held in collaboration with Broadway/San Diego. Candidates for Best Musical, Best Actor and Best Actress, were selected from onsite adjudications of high school musicals at their home venues during the 2016/2017 school year. Congratulations to Jillian Strattman of San Dieguito Academy for winning Best Actress, Sky Frank of San Diego School of Creative and Performing Arts for winning Best Actor and Cathedral Catholic High School for winning Best Musical for “Anything Goes.” Strattman and Frank were narrowed down from 20 leading female and male nominees. The winning Best Actor and Best Actress performers and teachers will be flown to New York for a week of intensive training before they compete in the national finals, the National High School Musical Theatre Awards, on a Broadway stage for $10,000 toward a college scholarship on Monday, June 26, 2017.

Chula Vista High School, along with five students, were also awarded at the event for their submissions in the 2017 Ben Vereen Awards Wellness Through the Arts. SDCCU presented Chula Vista High School with a $1,000 check and the winning students with $500 each.

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