12/7/2017 8:43:00 AM Epps, Pearson are CFHS ExCEL Award winners
by Ken Haggerty
Juniors Sophie Epps and Graham Pearson have been recognized as the Cannon Falls High School ExCEL (Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership) award winners.
The Minnesota State High School League program is designed to recognize juniors who are active in school activities, who show leadership qualities, and who volunteer in their community. Local winners compete at the State level for further recognition and awards.
Epps is active at St. Ansgar's Lutheran Church where she has helped out with vacation Bible school, Feed My Starving Children packing events and more. As part of the CFHS Interact and National Honor Society she has helped in community projects like a food drive and roadside cleanup.
Sophie carries a 4.0 grade point average while taking AP Comp, Humanities and on-line German. She is considering attending Luther College and pursuing a masters in physical therapy.
She has been a Fellowship of Christian Athletes leader since tenth grade and was a cross country captain this year. She went to State in cross country as a freshman and sophomore, but a stress fracture in her shin set her back this year. In track, she went to sections as a freshman in the 1600 and 3,200, but a quad injury derailed her last spring.
Sophie was recognized with superior ratings at regional vocal contests as an alto solist in both ninth and tenth grades. She takes part in the CFHS jazz choir in addition to the concert choir.
Epps is a features editor for the CFHS newspaper. She works summers with the Monsanto detasseling crew. She is the daughter of Dawn (Norstad) Epps and the brother of Ryan Epps (CFHS 2016). Grandparents Jim and Bonnie (Lindell) Norstad and great aunts Val Haggstrom, Deb Norstad, and Margene Benson are among the extended family who have supported Sophie over the years.
Pearson recently completed his Eagle Scout project, a fire pit and benches at Riverwood Community Church. With the NHS, he has helped out with Feed My Starving Children, food drives, and the Rotary's packing for the weekend food project.
Pearson maintains a 4.0 grade point average and challenges himself with a course load that has included AP computer science, AP U.S. history, AP composition, AP calculus and two years of Spanish. He has an interest in pursuing an academic degree in computer science or physics.
Pearson was the senior patrol leader with the Scouts and has helped lead summer camp groups with his church. He has been a standout on the CFHS math league team and is a sports editor with the school newspaper.
Pearson is active in both band and choir. He has earned superior awards for his solo and duet percussion pieces and takes part in jazz band and steel drum band, in addition to concert band. He has earned two superior awards for his solos as a bass singer.
Graham is also active in football, basketball and baseball. He recently earned his second varsity letter in football.
Graham is the son of Mark Pearson and Celeste Kogl and the brother of Bjorn Pearson (CFHS 2016).