Ashley Dalton, 15
The Lovett School, rising sophomore
Ashley Dalton, 15, daughter of Drs. Gail and Booker Dalton, is a 10th-grade honor student at The Lovett School. She is involved in a myriad of activities inside and outside school, including cross country, theater arts, Chinese and Model Arab League. But when asked which is the most important of her activities, the answer comes quickly: sustainability.
“My passion is to show others how important our relationship to the earth is — as important as our relationships with our fellow human beings and even our relationship with God,” she said. “We, as people, need that connection with the earth to find happiness.”
Ashley is a charter member of Lovett’s sustainability committee, a 24-person team of faculty, administrators, students, parents and representatives from the business community. The committee’s mission is to develop a sustainability plan for the school and support Lovett’s efforts to raise environmental awareness and promote ecological stewardship.
As part of the committee, Ashley led Lovett’s efforts to reduce the use of bottled water on campus. Thanks to those efforts, Lovett students and staff purchased 5,000 fewer bottles of water from the school’s café in the second semester than in the first, choosing to drink from fountains or bring reusable containers instead.
Ashley is also active in Lovett’s Ecology Club, for which she helped plan activities in celebration of Earth Week in April. In charge of Outdoor Appreciation Day, she organized outdoor games during lunch and encouraged teachers to hold classes outside.
The goal, Ashley said, is simply to enjoy our natural environment.
While acknowledging they aren’t perfect, Ashley said she and her family try to practice sustainability at home. The Daltons reuse gray water — water from such activities as washing dishes and bathing — outdoors; recycle, even saving obsolete electronics for Lovett’s annual e-waste drive; and belong to a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program through church.
Editor’s Note: If you know a secondary school student who goes above and beyond at school and in the community, download a nomination form at www.ReporterNewspapers.net.