Elise Boulton, a senior from Montezuma High School, has been named the 2021 recipient of the E. Wayne Cooley Scholarship Award. Elise was selected from 115 applicants and was honored at halftime of the Class 5A State Basketball Championship Game on Friday, March 5.
The E. Wayne Cooley Scholarship, named in honor of the longtime Iowa Girls' High School Athletic Union Executive Secretary, is a $15,000 over four years to assist the recipient as she attends the Iowa college or university of her choice.
Elise, who will attend Simpson College in the fall and play basketball for the Storm, was one of six finalists for the award. The other finalists were: Kristina Goth, MMCRU; Elle Gray, Nevada; Anna Winterrowd, OABCIG; Sophia Lindquist, Pleasant Valley; and Katie Carver, Urbandale. All five finalists receive $1,000 scholarships.
An outstanding student with a 4.0 grade point average, Elise ranks first in her graduating class. She is involved with the National Honor Society, student council, Christian youth groups, Spanish Club and is president of the Montezuma FFA Chapter.
Elise has received many athletic honors as well. She is a four-year cross country letter winner, having qualified for state all four years.
“I hold the record for the fastest 5K in school history and fastest home course 5K in school history,” said Boulton.
She has qualified for state track and field twice and has three individual school records. She has also been a four-year starter on the four-time state-qualifying Bravettes basketball team and holds two school records.
During the COVID-19 pandemic Elise, along with her mother and sister, made nearly 350 cloth face masks to give away to their friends, family and community. This rewarding experience helped teach Elise the definition of community service, the value of coming together and caring for one another.
“Receiving the Cooley Scholarship is one of the biggest honors of my high school career,” noted Elise. “I put a ton of thought and hard work into my essay and read an entire book about Mr. Cooley so I could truly understand the man who ultimately gave me each opportunity I’ve had in high school sports. To represent the Iowa girl at the highest level and be chosen by the IGHSAU left me speechless, and I am honored to be the recipient and I hope to carry on Dr. Cooley’s legacy of the Iowa girl.”
Elise is the daughter of Buddy and Marie Boulton. She is the 30th recipient of the Cooley Scholarship.