Lakeside Lutheran High School has announced its 2019 Badger Boys and Girls State representatives. The boys selected to represent Lakeside Lutheran at the 78th session of Badger Boys State at Ripon College from June 8-15 are Alex Ryan, son of Jeffery and Christine, Lake Mills, and Carter Schneider, son of Scott and Laura, Jefferson. The girls representing Lakeside Lutheran at the 76th session of Badger Girls State at UW-Oshkosh from June 16-21 are Annika Bilitz, daughter of Jon and Mary, Cottage Grove, and Lauren Thiele, daughter of Dan and Teresa, Poynette.
Annika Bilitz has participated in choir, track, Teens for Christ, and National Honor Society. Also a member of the forensics team, she has received second-team all-state honors and a gold medal at the WHSFA state meet. At Wisconsin Lutheran Chapel on the UW-Madison campus, she is a Sunday school teacher, helps with Christmas for Kids, and is active in the teen group.
Currently ranked eighth in the class in GPA, she is considering a career in business public relations or journalism. A sophomore transfer from Luther High School, Onalaska, Wis., Bilitz says, “My family moved after my first year of high school, so it was like starting over. New friends, new teachers, new city, new everything! I jumped in with both feet and embraced the move and my new circumstances. I have actually thrived in my new school and feel honored that they have chosen me to represent the school at Badger Girls State! I am excited to meet more new people and make new friends.”
Lauren Thiele, currently tied for first in class GPA, has been the Student Council class President for all three years and helps plan the annual blood drive, as well as homecoming and winter carnival. She has participated in Teens for Christ for three years (New Friends), is a member of the National Honor Society, and serves as the secretary for Lakeside’s chapter of the Society of Women Engineers. Thiele is considering a career in business or engineering.
A member at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Madison, Thiele participates in vacation Bible school, as well as the church’s sports camps and fundraising activities. At school she played volleyball for two years, has been on varsity for both basketball and track for three years, and served as a captain of the basketball team. She has attended the Lake Mills Leadership Optimist’s Club Breakfast and received second place (regional Wisconsin) for the Patriot’s Pen Essay Competition sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
“It’s an honor to be chosen from a group of high-excellence students at Lakeside. I am excited to work with new people and make a contribution to advance myself and those around me,” she says. She is also looking forward to “developing new skills in leadership and hear from many different people who have years of experience.”
Alex Ryan, a member of St. Paul, Lake Mills. volunteers at Twice is Nice Resale store, Second Harvest food bank, and with Adopt-A-Highway cleanup with National Honor Society. In addition, he ushers at his church.
At school, Ryan participates in Teens for Christ, the student newspaper, and the school yearbook. He is the team captain for the baseball team and made first team all-conference his freshman and sophomore years. He travels to play baseball for Stiks Academy and was invited to the Prep Baseball Report Future Games representing Team Wisconsin in Indianapolis. He also played basketball for two years and has been a Lakeside representative to the Lake Mills Leadership Optimist’s Club Breakfast.
“I am looking forward to spending time with many great people and learning new things about leadership,” says Alex. “There are many guys in my class that are deserving of this honor, and I am grateful to be chosen.”
Carter Schneider is “a hard worker who puts his heart into things. I would much rather be a hands-on guy than letting someone else do it, whatever it is,” he says. “I consider myself easy to talk to, whether it’s kids my age or adults, and I don’t mind speaking in front of people.”
Schneider is a member of St. Paul, Lake Mills, where he ushers, canvasses, and serves as a VBS counselor. He works on a chicken farm and has prepared food for people at the Ronald McDonald house. At school, he is his class Vice-President of Student Council and has received academic letters all three years. He received an all-conference honorable mention for baseball last year. Also a member of the National Honor Society, he is considering a career in engineering, business, or accounting.
Commenting on what he’s most looking forward to during the Badger Boy session, he reports that he is looking forward to the opportunity to learn “more about what it’s like to be a leader.”
Badger State Government and Leadership Conferences are an opportunity for students entering their senior year of high school to put the principles of democratic government into action during a weeklong assembly. Sponsored by the Wisconsin American Legion and its Auxiliary, the goals of Badger State assemblies are to prepare young men and women of high school age for citizenship in a modern world, teach principles of democracy, instill a love of country and desire to preserve our government. Schools are encouraged to select representatives based on a combination of interest shown, leadership qualities, character, fitness, scholarship and extra-curricular activities.