Several local students were recently awarded the American Youth Foundation's National Leadership Award in recognition of personal integrity, balanced living and leadership potential.

Caitlin Lange of the C&T and Tuloso-Midway 4-H clubs, Amy McClendon of the Cloverleaf 4-H Club, Andrea Ramos of the London 4-H Club, and Travis St. Clair of the Tuloso-Midway 4-H Club were presented with their awards by Nueces County 4-H at a ceremony Aug. 1 at the old Showbarn in Robstown.

The National Leadership Award is presented each year by the American Youth Foundation in cooperation with principals, counselors, county 4-H agents, church groups and other organizations across the country.

The award was first offered in 1941 by the late William H. Danforth, founder of the Ralston Purina Co. in St. Louis, who challenged young people to achieve their highest potential and to influence others through lives of service.

The award is inspired by Danforth's book, "I Dare You!," in which he commends the balanced life of mental, physical, social and spiritual developments as the backbone of leadership.

In addition to a certificate of recognition, each recipient received a copy of Danforth's book and an opportunity to attend AYF's Leadership Conference in Shelby, Mich. at which more than 7,000 schools, 4-H programs and other organizations participate.