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Area student selected as MN representative for ALA Girls Nation

Deanna Hoffenkamp is one of only 98 young women selected to attend the 68th American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) Girls Nation in Washington, D.C., July 19-26. Two outstanding citizens, known as "senators," are selected at the 49 ALA Girls State sessions held across the country to represent their state at ALA Girls Nation. This premier leadership conference is designed to provide practical insight into the workings of government, promote youth civic engagement, to instill a sense of pride in America, and to empower the next generation of women leaders, providing them with a national network that lasts a lifetime.

At Minnesota Girls State, Deanna was elected to her local City Council. She also participates in many activities at her school, Sebeka High, and in her community. For example, she is involved in Future Farmers of America, a gold ranked member of Family, Career and Community Leaders of America, and active in the Blowers Chapel Youth Group.

A key component of the ALA Girls Nation program is the mock senate sessions where the delegates write, caucus, and debate bills. Campaigns are held to elect party officials and an ALA Girls Nation president and vice president.

In addition to their legislative forums, the senators hear distinguished guest speakers and visit the Pentagon, Arlington National Cemetery, the White House, and other memorials in the area. Their visit to Capitol Hill includes meetings with their respective senators and representatives and the opportunity to meet President Obama.

"The ALA Girls Nation experience is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for young women across our nation," said Trish Ward, American Legion Auxiliary Girls Nation national chairman. "After attending their local ALA Girls State program and then ALA Girls Nation, the girls return home with a passion for democracy and an appreciation for our nation's veterans and their families."