John L. Miller–Great Neck North High School presented two prestigious awards at its graduation ceremony, which was held at the Tilles Center, the Alan L. Gleitsman Outstanding Graduate Award and the Genelle Taney Memorial Award. Other Class of 2017 awards were presented at the school’s Senior Awards Event prior to commencement.
The late Alan Gleitsman, a 1947 graduate of then Great Neck High School, established the Alan L. Gleitsman Outstanding Graduate Award in 1988 to be given annually to a North High School graduating senior. Gleitsman winners must place within the top 10 percent of their graduating class, uphold a high level of quality involvement in student activities, be dedicated to the school and the well-being of fellow students and have a commitment to pursue further education on the college level. Zachary Lee is the winner of the 2017 Gleitsman Award.
Lee is class valedictorian, a Frederic Duclos Barstow Award winner, an Advanced Placement Scholar with Distinction (earning perfect scores on his six exams), a National Merit Scholarship Competition Finalist and a National Spanish Exam Silver Medalist. He was copresident of Junior Players and Tri-M Music Honor Society, and captain and founder of the newly formed Junior Players Improv Group. Lee was a Nassau County Long Island Scholar Artist, selected for NAfME All-National and All-Eastern Honor Ensembles Mixed Choirs (Bass 2 singer), NYSSMA All-State Conference, playing flute in the Symphonic Band and a NYSSMA Piano Showcase Alternate. He was a member of North High’s Chamber Music Society, Symphony Orchestra, Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble and International Thespian Society. Lee participated in Junior Players productions throughout his four years at North, and was a contributing writer for Epiphany, the school’s literary magazine. He will be attending Yale University in the fall.
Genelle B. Taney was a 2003 North High graduate who died at age 19, after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Taney was the 2003 Gleitsman Award recipient and is remembered for her “unsurpassed love of knowledge, a dedication to the arts, a passion for athletics and an endless commitment to the betterment of her school and her fellow classmates.” The Taney Award recipient should possess a combination of these qualities. The award, which was established in Taney’s memory in 2006, is based solely on merit and one quarter of it must be contributed by the recipient to a charity of his/her choice, subject to the approval of the award trustees. Nicholas Bornstein is the winner of the 2017 Taney Award.
Bornstein is an Advanced Placement Scholar, an officer in Model Congress, sports columnist for the school newspapers, Guide Post, member of EUFA (Everyone United for Africa) and an active Peer Leader. He played junior varsity and varsity baseball and participated in the New York State School Music Association competition in piano. Bornstein will attend Boston University.
Read the complete graduation speeches from the Great Neck North Class of 2017: Yunyi (Anita) Zhang and Zachary Lee, and from Great Neck South: Rachel Brenner, Isabella Harnick, Isabella Malfi, Benjamin Newman, Joshua Putter, Shrinath Viswanathan and Melody Yang.
Learn about the 2017 valedictorians and salutatorians here.