Neighbors in the News: Maine East social science chair wins civic leadership award

  • Billson Rasavongxay

    Billson Rasavongxay

Posted10/6/2022 6:00 AM

• Billson Rasavongxay, Maine East Social Science Department chairman, was honored with the Carolyn Pereira Civic Leadership Award at this year's Illinois Democracy Schools Convening held recently at the Double Tree Hilton in Lisle.

Rasavongxay has been involved with the Illinois Democracy Schools for many years as a team leader, member of the Democracy Schools Network Advisory Council and frequent collaborator on Illinois Democracy Schools projects.

Quarterback Brad Vierneisel, Prospect High School.
Quarterback Brad Vierneisel, Prospect High School. - Courtesy of Prospect High School

• Congratulations to Prospect High School Quarterback Brad Vierneisel who was named the Chicago Bears' High School All-Star for Week Four. The High School All-Stars program is sponsored by Athletico Physical Therapy. The Bears will make a $500 donation to the youth football program of Vierneisel's choice.

On Sept. 15, Vierneisel, a senior, helped lead the Prospect Knights of Mount Prospect to a dramatic 42-41 win against the Maine South Hawks of Park Ridge. Vierneisel sealed the win by running for a touchdown and soon after, made a risky diving two-point conversion with 44 seconds left in the fourth quarter after being down 41-34.

In addition to his winning touchdown, Vierneisel also went 29-of-47 for 441 yards and four touchdowns. He currently has 1,512 yards and 17 touchdowns for the season. This marks his fourth start as a quarterback after being converted from a wide receiver.

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The Chicago Bears' High School All-Star program launched in 2011. The nomination criteria for the program includes on-field performance, community involvement and good sportsmanship.

Ms. Illinois Antonella Scarpiello
Ms. Illinois Antonella Scarpiello - Courtesy of Matty Jacobson/Magic Dreams Productions, Barrington

• Highland Park resident Joni S. Meyerowitz, chief operating officer of Chicago-based real estate services and technology firm, @properties, has been appointed to its board of directors.

As a member of the board, Meyerowitz will provide guidance on strategy, growth and operations across the full portfolio of @properties companies, including the Christie's International Real Estate and @properties affiliate networks; company-owned real estate brokerage firms in Illinois, Georgia, California, Michigan, Wisconsin, Indiana and Virginia; Proper Title, Illinois' second largest independent title agency; Proper Rate, a national mortgage lender co-owned with Guaranteed Rate; and Suburban Jungle Group, a homebuying advisory and referral firm.


Meyerowitz took on the role of @properties COO in 2010, after a decade in business consulting with companies including Keane Consulting Group and Equity Office Properties and five years as an @properties real estate agent. She holds a master's degree in management and finance from the Crummer Graduate School of Business at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, where she also earned her undergraduate degree in psychology.

Joni Meyerowitz
Joni Meyerowitz - Courtesy of Bella Paredes

• Schaumburg resident Antonella Scarpiello was selected as Ms. Illinois to compete in the Ms. America Pageant in 2022.

Ms. America is for women 26 years of age and up who are single, divorced, widowed, or married. The pageant's mission is to promote, honor and advance the status of women, recognize their achievements and encourage their involvement in the community.

Scarpiello holds a Ph.D. in instructional technology and multimedia design. She enjoys creating videos and 3D animations to educate the community about animal welfare. She has experience working as a print model. She loves horse riding, hiking, acting, dancing and spending time with her human and furry friends. Her platform in the pageant is "Save a Life -- Make a Friend."

The Ms. America Pageant will be held Oct. 29, at the Curtis Theater in Brea, California.

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