LAPS Launches Month Of Recognition For LAHS Seniors

doorwayAn example of a door decorated to celebrate Senior Haley Adams-Brown. Photo Courtesy LAPS


The Los Alamos Public Schools School Board and County Council have proclaimed May as “Celebrating Our Seniors Month.” Ellen Ben-Naim, LAPS School Board President and County Council Chair Sara Scott signed the proclamation which was presented at the start of last week’s School Board meeting. The Class of 2020 will be honored through a series of activities that started last Friday with the distribution of yard signs to the home of each senior.

“The COVID-19 quarantine has spurred creativity in the way we honor our seniors,” said Los Alamos High School Principal Carter Payne. “We have a chance to rethink how we do things. Luckily, we have a resilient and resourceful senior class who have come up with creative ideas to celebrate and are establishing new traditions.”

Senior class president Maddie Ovaska and vice president Ellie Oldham, along with Student Body president Emily Holmes and vice president Rebekah Lockhart, have led the charge, meeting (virtually) with the LAHS administrative team, Student Leadership sponsors Lynn Ovaska and Jonathan Lathrop, and Senior Class co-sponsors Kimberly Engelking and Rebecca Jones.

“Most of the events being planned are student-driven,” explained Lynn Ovaska. “It’s amazing how positive they’ve been in adjusting to the new normal. They have planned a lot of activities for students and their families during the month of May to celebrate being a senior.”

Every member of the senior class received a yard sign declaring “Proud Home of a Topper Senior” last Friday. Deliveries of signs were done by LAHS Staff, Senior Officers, and Senior Sponsors, including: Maddie Ovaska, Ellie Oldham, Emily Holmes, Rebekah Lockhart, Alison Renner, Analicia Ronquillo, Anne Shirey, Becca Jones, Brandi Hults, Carter Payne, Colleen Swavely, Elizabeth Bates, Isabel Duque, Jacqueline Chavez, Jill Gonzales, Julia Kuehn, Kathy Hipwood, Kimberly Engelking, Kristen Pyle, Kurt Steinhaus, Leanne Hick, Louise Foliot, Lynn Ovaska, Melissa Laesar, Michael Montano, Michelle Holland, Stephanie Meyer, Sue Wilson, and Susan Segler.  

 Signs were donated by the Los Alamos Public Schools Foundation and the Los Alamos Kiwanis Club. If a Senior did not receive their sign, please email

 LAHS will host “Be the Light” this Friday, May 1 to kick off our Celebrating Seniors for the Month of May. At 8:20 p.m. (2020 hours), the lights at Sullivan Field will be turned on for 20 minutes. People are invited to drive by on Diamond Drive and see the lights. We want to observe the social distancing guidelines in place so we are asking that you not  congregate in or around the stadium or parking lots. 

 Members of the community are asked to turn on porch lights, put up their Christmas lights, honk your horns, go for a walk with your headlamps on, etc. “This is an opportunity as a community to demonstrate support for the Class of 2020,” said LAHS Athletic Director Ann Stewart.

 Community members are also invited to send Community Graduation Cards to a Topper Senior they know. Using this link (, well wishers are invited to choose Seniors they know and write them a positive message.  Messages will be previewed by LAHS Admin and then emailed directly with those individual Seniors and their families the week of May 25. The link to the Community Graduation Cards will be shared May 1st and be available during the month of May. Whether you are a family friend, an employer, a former coach, a religious leader, or former teacher, if you know a Topper Senior, send them a message of congratulations.

 Other events throughout the month include door decorating where seniors and their families are encouraged to decorate their front windows and doors to celebrate, creation of digital pages where seniors can share their future plans, Class of 2020 wills and prophecies, a Topper senior video and a senior recognition slideshow. Seniors are also invited to take a photo in their Class of 2020 t-shirts and/or their cap and gown and tag the Class of 2020 on Instagram.

 Seniors are encouraged to share their experiences and photos on social media at Class of 2020 Instagram: @hilltoppers2020; LAHS Instagram: @lahstoppers; and LAHS Snapchat: @hilltoppers.snap.

 For questions regarding events during Celebrate Our Seniors Month, please email






Photo caption one: Senior class president Maddie Ovaska displays a yard sign celebrating the Class of 2020 before they were distributed. Every senior received a yard sign, donated by the LAPS Foundation and Los Alamos Kiwanis and personally delivered by LAHS staff, senior officers and senior sponsors. 


Photo caption two: An example of a door decorated to celebrate Senior Haley Adams-Brown.