VOICE OF DEMOCRACY STATE WINNER – (In photo from left) back – Dalton Eason, Amanda Eason and Steve Eason; front:  Lydia Eason and Ruben Armenta, Missouri VFW State Commander.

Local girl wins VFW Missouri Voice of Democracy Scholarship

Lydia Eason, a freshman at El Dorado Springs High School, was named the VFW Department of Missouri’s first-place winner and recipient of the $2,000 Voice of Democracy award in the 2017  Voice of Democracy Scholarship program. VFW Post 257 and its Auxiliary in El Dorado Springs, MO., sponsored Lydia.  She is the daughter of Steve and Amanda Eason.

“The Voice of Democracy competition provides high school students with the opportunity to speak out on freedom and democracy,” says VFW Department Commander Ruben Armenta. “The program has been popular and successful since its beginning in 1947, and we’re proud to keep offering it to America’s young people.”

The Voice of Democracy is a worldwide audio-essay competition that requires entrants to write and record a three-to-five minute essay on a patriotic-based theme. “American History: Our Hope For the Future” was this year’s theme.

As one of 54 finalists worldwide, Lydia will travel to Washington, D.C., and compete at the national level for the first-place prize of a $30,000 college scholarship.

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) started the Voice of Democracy Scholarship program in 1947. The VFW became a national sponsor in the late 1950s and assumed sole responsibility for the program in 1961. The competition was created to provide students grades 9-12 the opportunity to express themselves in regard to democratic ideas and principles. Around 40,000 students participate in the competition each year and VFW awards more than $2.1 million in scholarships every year.