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February 20, 2014

THE GREATER GOOD: Local student gets high honor

Chloe Motley named Youth Achiever of the Year

NEW ALBANY — Chloe Motley’s schedule is usually pretty full. If she’s not volunteering at her church’s food kitchen, she’s serving as a peer educator for Planned Parenthood, or probably getting involved in community service somewhere else.

Nevermind the fact she’s also trying to maintain or exceed her 3.7 grade point average at New Albany High School.

The Bulldog senior is the recipient of the YMCA of Greater Louisville’s Black Achievers Youth Achiever of the Year award. Out of nearly 20 students in the area, Motley was recognized for her academic achievements and dedication to helping in the community.

“I was so surprised and humbled because I knew this was such a competitive award,” Motley said. “Different teenagers with high GPAs, high test scores, apply for this. I was humbled to know I was the one that caught their attention the most.”

But she said she knew just because she won, it didn’t make her any better than anyone else in the contest.

Motley listed about a dozen organizations and activities she’s involved herself in since her freshman year, both in and out of school.

She said anything she can do to help others is what she finds most rewarding.

“There are so many people that just because of their economic status, where they live or coming from a broken home can almost factor into why they don’t succeed or why they’re not able to bring out their potential,” Motley said. “I feel like I’m in a solid point in my life where I can go reach out and give my talents to someone, pull them up and pull out the potential in them.”

The experiences in and out of school aren’t the only ones that have shaped her. After several universities accepted her and she continues to make up her mind on which to attend, Motley said helping care for her father, Douglass, has also helped shape the path she hopes to take in life.

After living with diabetes and suffering from other health problems that have left him unable to fully take care of himself, she said she’s gotten used to making sure his medical needs are met, along with help from her mother, Shajuana.

“I had to learn how to cook his meals, balance carbs, administer his insulin and check his blood sugar,” Motley said. “I had a hands-on experience with what I wanted to do in the future.”

After studying biology for her undergraduate work, she said she hopes to become a pediatric endocrinologist to help children with diabetes.

She said though she maintains high standards on herself, she manages to find time to enjoy life with her friends, through music, writing and a little retail therapy.

“There are weeks where I overbook myself of from Monday through Friday, I know there’s absolutely no room for anything else,” Motley said. “But I try to create a balance to let myself hang out with friends or relax at home.”

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Students of Ms. Kitzmiller's first grade class sing and dance in the gymnasium at Grant Line Elementary before heading to their classroom to begin the school year Thursday morning in New Albany.

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