ews_awardeesWINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Local students Sam Tarleton, Cameron McBee, Londyn Marshall, Melissa Black and Natalie Martinez have each been awarded funds to assist in their college education.

Equality Winston-Salem gave one $1,000 and four $250 scholarships to LGBT and ally students which will be applied to the cost of undergraduate tuition, fees, room and board and/or other college expenses.

This was the inaugural year for this program.

“This scholarship shows me that my work for the LGBT community really means something. I am proud to be the first of many LGBT youth to be recognized for their hard work,” Tarleton said.

Tarleton, who was the $1,000 recipient, hails from Parkland High School. He was a member of the Paisley/Parkland Debate team, co-president of Parkland’s Gay Straight Alliance, Organizing for America and Amendment One volunteer and founder of the Mustang Political Activist Club. He will attend Mercer University in Macon, Ga.

McBee, who also attended Parkland, has taken part in events sponsored by the Parkland GSA, has supported couples in the “We Do” campaign and has attended Winston-Salem Pride. He was also able to witness and participate in the union of his gay neighbors and friends in Washington, D.C. He’ll be attending Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Ga.

Marshall, from West Forsyth High School, was a supporting ally who has been a member of the West Forsyth Equality Club since 2010. She was InterClub Council secretary, Key Club editor, past Junior Class secretary and played Women’s Lacrosse from 2009-2011. She will be attending the University of Kentucky.

Black, from Carver High School, is a strong advocate for LGBTQ rights. She established the first gay/straight alliance (GSA) at her high school. She will attend Forsyth Technical Community College.

Martinez, who came from Early College of Forsyth, was a strong advocate for the LGBTQ community, participated in PRIDE, Link Up to Stop Bullying and PRIDE Club events. She will attend Salem College. : :

[Ed. Note — A version of this story which appears in our June 7, 2013, print edition inadvertently excluded information about Melissa Black. The information is included in the story above. We regret the error.]

Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen was formerly QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director from 2001-2019 when she retired.