Community News and Notes

Sawyer Gillilan

Sawyer Gillilan

Kristi Isaak of Soldotna has been named to the Honor List at Northwestern State University of Louisiana in Natchitoches for the Spring 2014 semester. Students on the Honor List must be enrolled full-time at Northwestern State and have a grade point average of between 3.0 and 3.49.

Sawyer Gillilan of Kenai will become the first from Alaska in seven years to receive DeMolay International’s highest honor, the Degree of Chevalier, the organization announced recently.

Currently, Gillilan is State Master Councilor for DeMolay Alaska, the highest youth leadership position in the state. His role as Alaska’s Master Councilor also makes him a voting member of the International DeMolay Congress. This is the body comprised of youth DeMolay leaders from around the world.

Prior to his selection as Alaska’s Master Councilor, Gillilan held the posts of Master Councilor of the Tikahtnu DeMolay Chapter in Kenai of DeMolay and Master Squire in the Kenai Manor of the Order of the Squires, an order affiliated with DeMolay for boys aged 8-11.

The Chevalier Degree is awarded for exceptional and meritorious service to DeMolay and to the community where the honored DeMolay member resides.

The International Supreme Council, the governing body of DeMolay International, chooses recipients once a year. Only a few DeMolays are chosen each year to receive this honor.

“Sawyer will receive this award because of his work as the youth responsible in re-establishing DeMolay in Alaska after the organization had been inactive for several years,” said Bruce Kling of Anchorage, Executive Director of DeMolay Alaska. “He helped organize Alaska’s first Squires’ Manor in Alaska, and then reorganized Kenai’s Tikahtnu Chapter of DeMolay after it laid dormant for more than 20 years. He has been actively promoting DeMolay in many settings, including speaking about it to numerous adult and youth organizations, community leaders, and youth throughout the state. Through his persistent efforts he has kept the dream of DeMolay alive in Alaska. There is now a new and growing chapter in Juneau, one organizing in Anchorage, and interest spreading to other communities.”

Gillilan, 17, graduated this spring from the Interior Distance Education of Alaska (IDEA) homeschool program, and took classes at Kenai Peninsula College. He will soon travel across the United States and to Europe to continue his studies in psychology.

Gillilan was invested with his honor at a ceremony held Saturday at the Anchorage Masonic Temple. The public is invited.

DeMolay is an international organization for young men from ages 8 through 21 that began more than 90 years ago in response to a need for boys and young men to find positive role models and a supportive environment in which to develop character.

Has a new addition to your family just arrived? Where in the world is your military person and what are they up to? Got a new graduate, dean’s list student or an award-receiving youth?

Do you have a news event, activity or fundraiser you need to let the community know about? Send it to us!

Email your community events to, fax it to 283-3299, drop it off at the Clarion office in Kenai at 150 Trading Bay Drive (Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) or mail your information to us at P.O. Box 3009, Kenai AK 99611.

Events, wedding, engagement and birth submissions may not be older than six months. Wedding anniversary announcements are printed in five-year increments beginning with the 20th.

The Community page is a way to highlight activities and events that happen with a photo. If your group or organization has a photo of an event to share, submit the photo and the following information for print: Who took the photo, who’s in it, when and where it was taken, a brief description of what’s happening, and a name and phone number in case we have questions.

Submissions are printed as space is available. For more information, call 335-1251.

More in Life

This artwork, as well as the story that accompanied it in the October 1953 issue of Master Detective magazine, sensationalized and fictionalized an actual murder in Anchorage in 1919. The terrified woman in the image is supposed to represent Marie Lavor.
A nexus of lives and lies: The William Dempsey story — Part 1

William Dempsey and two other men slipped away from the rest of the prison road gang on fog-enshrouded McNeil Island, Washington, on Jan. 30, 1940

Minister’s Message: Reorienting yourself to pray throughout the day

No doubt, one of the most remarkable gifts God gives to communicate with his creation is the gift of prayer

The Christ Lutheran Church is seen on Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Musicians bring ‘golden age of guitar’ to Performing Arts Society

Armin Abdihodžic and Thomas Tallant to play concert Saturday

Storm Reid plays June Allen in “Missing,” a screenlife film that takes place entirely on the screens of multiple devices, including a laptop and an iPhone. (Photo courtesy Sony Pictures)
On The Screen: ‘Missing’ is twisty, modern, great

I knew “Missing” was something special early on

Puff pastry desserts are sprinkled with sugar. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
Puff pastry made simple

I often shop at thrift stores. Mostly for cost, but also out… Continue reading

Nick Varney
Unhinged Alaska: Would I do it again?

I ran across some 20-some year-old journal notes rambling on about a 268-foot dive I took

A copy of Prince Harry’s “Spare” sits on a desk in the Peninsula Clarion office on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023, in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Off the Shelf: Prince Harry gets candid about ‘gilded cage’ in new memoir

“Spare” undoubtedly succeeds in humanizing Harry

The cast of “Tarzan” rides the Triumvirate Theatre float during the Independence Day parade in downtown Kenai, Alaska on Monday, July 4, 2022. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Triumvirate swings into the year with ‘Tarzan’, Dr. Seuss and fishy parody

The next local showing of the Triumvirate Theatre is fast approaching with a Feb. 10 premiere of “Seussical”

This vegan kimchi mandu uses crumbled extra-firm tofu as the protein. (Photo by Tressa Dale / Peninsula Clarion)
Meditating on the new year with kimchi mandu

Artfully folding dumplings evokes the peace and thoughtful calm of the Year of the Rabbit

Most Read