Shade Tree Commission Chairman Louise I. Donoghue poses with Mother Teresa Regional School fifth-grade poster contest honorees (from left) Alicia Flanagan, Molly Connelly and Mark Marullo. Photo credit: Peter E. Donoghue

          ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS -- Twelve Mother Teresa Regional School students have been honored by the borough Shade Tree Commission for their participation in the annual Arbor Day tree poster contest.
         Earlier, 18 Atlantic Highlands Elementary School students were cited by commission chairman Louise I. Donoghue during an awards assembly. The first-place winning posters, four from Mother Teresa and six from the public school, are on display in the windows of attorney Henry Wolff, 79 First Ave.
        Each of the 30 recognized pupils received gift certificates from Barnes & Noble and notice that a tree will be planted in their honor in a national forest. The theme of the poster contest was "Trees Are Our Friends."
        At Mother Teresa, third graders honored were Angellina Koeniz, first place; Ellie Conover, seconf place, and Jeanna Hennessey, honorable mention.

        Mother Teresa fourth graders recognized were Grace McKinney, first; Paige Larson, second, and Orianna Nolan, honorable mention.

        Fifth graders at the parochial school honored were Molly Connelly, first place; Alicia Flanagan, second place, and Mark Marullo, honorable mention.

        Mother Teresa sixth graders recognized were Ava Iannaci, first; Robert O'Keefe, second, and Page Smith, honorable mention.

        At Atlantic Highlands Elementary School, first graders honored were Adrianna Laborante, first place; Siofra King, second place, and Shealyn Higgins, honorable mention. Second graders recognized were Charlotte Young, first; Grace Schutzenhofer, second, and Layla Wasserman, honorable mention.

        Prize-winning third graders were Emily Rogers, first; Eddie Payne, second, and Kalelle Marrucca, honorable mention. Fourth graders honored were Maeve Sherlock, first place; Bailey Tucker, second place, and Clay Kline, honorable mention.

        Prize-winning fifth graders were Shannon Forbes, first; Ricardo Santuiste, second, and Genevieve Keelen, honorable mention. Sixth grade honorees were Ralph D'Antonio, first; Corina Vidal, second, and Sean Haupt, honorable mention.

        The poster contests mark the finale of the borough's Arbor Day observances and included the planting of two trees honoring the borough's first responders at the municipal yacht harbor and a tree-related educational program for children at the public library.
        Also, the commission distributed 200 pine tree tublings to local youngsters.
        Mrs. Donoghue also has announced that the borough has been named a "Tree City USA" for the 33rd straight year in honor of its commitment to community forestry. The national recognition was accorded by the Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the National Association of State Foresters and the U.S. Forest Service.