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CHAPEL HILL – Abby Norris of East Bladen High School has been named the female recipient of the 10th annual Clary Medal awarded by the North Carolina High School Athletic Association. Connor Hough of Pamlico High School is the male recipient of the award. This award basically recognizes the top male and female academic student-athlete in the state
The outstanding student-athletes were recognized at the NCHSAA’s Annual Meeting on Thursday, May 7, at the Dean E. Smith Center on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The Clary Medal is made possible through the generosity of the Eddie and Jo Allison Smith Family Foundation through the NCHSAA Endowment. It annually recognizes an outstanding male and female student-athlete, who will each receive a $2,000 scholarship to further his or her education at the college level.
Norris has been an excellent athlete at East Bladen, competing in varsity volleyball, basketball and softball. She has served as captain of all three teams and also earned all-conference honors in all three. She is this year’s Four County Conference Volleyball Player of the Year, and last year she was the East Bladen High School Female Athlete of the Year.
She has excelled academically, ranked number one in her class, and is also active in a number of extra-curricular activities. She has been involved in student government, including vice-president of the Student Government Association, is president of the National Beta club and served as captain for the Science Olympiad team for her school. She is also a national finalist for the Us Army-Pro Football Hall of Fame Award which will be presented in Canton, Ohio in August.
Abby will be enrolled at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the fall and plans to major in biology. Her parents are Eddie and Stephanie Norris of Bladenboro and she is the niece of veteran Chapel Hill High School women’s volleyball and basketball coach Sherry Norris.
The award is in memory of Wilburn Columbus Clary, a member of the NCHSAA Hall of Fame who was an outstanding coach and game official. He served as the executive secretary of the old Western North Carolina High School Activities Association from 1948 through 1977, when its schools joined the NCHSAA. Clary was also the first collegiate football official to be inducted into the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.
“Both of these award winners are exemplary citizens and student-athletes,” said Davis Whitfield, NCHSAA commissioner. “Abby and Connor are outstanding selections for the Clary Medals, one of the top awards the NCHSAA can present to a student.”