HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC (March 24, 2021) – Eleven outstanding Beaufort County seniors have been named Heritage Classic Foundation scholars for the 2020-2021 school year. The students come from six different high schools.

Due to COVID-19 safety concerns, the annual Scholar luncheon was not held. The scholars received their awards by mail and met Heritage Classic Foundation Scholar Committee Chairman, Scott Richardson and other committee members during a video conference. “This is always an exciting day for the Heritage Classic Foundation, even if we are just meeting virtually,” Richardson told the scholars. “Choosing the eleven students to receive these awards was a hard task. We believe your accomplishments should be rewarded and your teachers and administrators deserve special praise.”

Richardson also pointed out, “You are not just straight A students. You are leaders in your schools, communities and churches. Your interests vary from music to sports to caring for the elderly.”

Six of the newly named Scholars will receive a $16,000 scholarship over the next four years, including the Scholar Alumni Award. Four additional awards carry a $20,000 opportunity. Two of the latter scholarships honor the past Scholar Committee chairmen, John Zimmerman and the late Mike Malanick. One honors the late Scholar Committee member Charlie Brown, and the Tartan Club Award recognizes the donations made by the Tartan Club. Created by the Heritage Classic Foundation, the Tartan Club is a group created by the individuals who share a desire to help others through the creation of scholarships for area students.

A new scholarship was introduced. The Kirby Scholarship, a one-year $3k scholar award, was created in memoriam of past Scholar Committee chairman Ward Kirby and will be granted every year moving forward.

Next fall, 41 Beaufort County collegians will be receiving Foundation grants at an expenditure of $178,000. A grand total of $4.63M will have been awarded to 353 students after the 2021 distribution.

In addition to these eleven scholarships, the Foundation is funding four $2,500 annual scholarships to the University of South Carolina Beaufort and two $1,500 annual scholarships to the Technical College of the Lowcountry.

The following graduating seniors were selected:

Beaufort High School: Abigail Chiaviello, Caleb Henry
Bluffton High School: Karina Dorris, Penelope Roman-Gomez
Hilton Head Christian Academy: Shelby Dorth
Hilton Head Island High School: Thomas Hughson, Joseph Hutchinson, Niklas Kronlein, Julia Kubec
Holy Trinity Classical Christian School: Elizabeth O’Neal
May River High School: Taylor Gilmore


Abigail Chiaviello – Attends Beaufort High and is involved the Interact Club and is president of the French Honors Society. She has lettered in Track and Lacrosse. She spent her junior year in France as a Rotary Exchange student and is now a Rotary Youth Ambassador. She credits the experience for awakening her passion for travel and studying the global community and its diversity.

Karina Dorris – Attends Bluffton High and is on track to receive the AP Biomedical Science certificate. She tutors children in math and economics and helps high schoolers prepare for state exams. She is a member of the Interact Club and helps with toy and food drives. She credits her school counselor for challenging and motivating her to always be better. (Brown Award)

Shelby Dorth – Spent her senior year as the “new kid” at Hilton Head Christian Academy after her family relocated from Wisconsin. At her previous school she was captain of the cross country team and “most likely to make you smile after a hard race.” This year she competed on the golf team and is a FCA leader. She sings with her church’s praise team and helps live stream services during COVID-19. (Tartan Club Award)

Taylor Gilmore – Helped organize a voter registration event at May River High School and is an active member of the DECA Business Club and the Youth in Government Club. She lettered in cross country and track and field, specializing in hurdles. She volunteered at the Moss Creek Equestrian Center and now focuses on helping at local road races.

Caleb Henry – Has been dedicated to the DECA and VEX Robotics Clubs at Beaufort High. He formed the school’s official robotics team and lead them to a top 5 finish at the state championship. He is member of the Interact Club and was a Boy Scout that helped clean up Fort Fremont multiple times.

Thomas Hughson – Is president of Model United Nations and the French National Honor Society at Hilton Head Island High School. He has helped defend the Model UN’s region title for the past two years and is preparing for national competitions. He does archaeological work and loves what he has learned about the Island’s long history. He is the swim team captain and is a Junior Nationals four time qualifier. (Malanick Award)

Joseph Hutchinson – Calls himself a lifer, since he has attended the Hilton Head Island public school system for 13 years. He is the principal cellist in Hilton Head High’s award winning orchestra and enjoys playing in the pit for the school’s theater productions. He is a member of JROTC and is on the Academic World Quest Team. He volunteers each week at an assisted living facility and is active in his church.

Niklas Kronlein – Has swam competitively since he was 10 and is on Hilton Head Island High’s team. He is President of the Spanish National Honor Society and the Young Republicans Club. He is an FCA Student Leader and has earned the Mayor’s Service Award. Every week he helps “Go Green” and volunteers to clean up trash and recycle materials on campus.

Julia Kubec – Has been a leader in Hilton Head Island High’s student government since freshman year. She is a starter on the soccer team and was a U.S. Presidential Scholarship State Finalist. She is active in her church and participated in youth mission trips to Honduras and Dominican Republic. She recently help distribute COVID-19 PPE to medical personnel on Hilton Head Island. (Zimmerman Award)

Penelope Roman-Gomez – Is a three sport athlete at Bluffton High. She is the cross country team captain and plays soccer and track and field. She is in the Math Honor Society and was recognized as a Hispanic Scholar by the college board. She works with students at the Boys and Girls Club and volunteers at beach clean ups. She enjoys deadlifting and running with her local run club.

Elizabeth O’Neal – Is on the Senior Council at Holy Trinity Classical Christian School in Beaufort. The Council has organized spirit weeks and planned fundraisers. She takes photos for the yearbook and is passionate about competing on the debate team. She is active in her church and sings in the choir. She also volunteers at a local nursing home and has been humbled by the experience. (Kirby Award)

The Heritage Classic Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, is dedicated to supporting educational and charitable initiatives to enhance quality of life and economic vitality by hosting the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing, South Carolina’s only PGA TOUR golf tournament. Since it was founded in 1987, the Foundation has donated more than $45.8 million to people in need. For more information, call (843) 671-2448, visit www.heritageclassicfoundation.com or Facebook (Heritage Classic Foundation) and Twitter (@HCFGolf).