Jillian Ball was nominated by Ali Figurin and Christina McCann, school counselors.

Jillian was born on the Winter Solstice 2005. She was full of surprises for her family, not the least of which was her augmented chromosomal status. Jillian experiences many medical and developmental challenges related to Down syndrome. Jillian fought to develop strength to walk a few months after her 4th birthday and has undergone 11 surgical procedures in her 14 years.  In May of 2013, Jillian almost lost her father to an undiagnosed heart condition. Later that same year, Jillian was handed perhaps the greatest challenge she had faced to date when she was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.  Jillian has worked hard to be as independent as possible with her challenges and has refused to let them limit her or define how others see her. Jillian has the support and love of her extensive family, including her mom and dad, older sister and younger brother. She has inspired her family to see the beauty in the “little things.”  Her older sister has become an avid volunteer for Adams Camp, an organization that provides respite and therapy camp for kids and adults with disabilities.  Her brother is a tireless advocate of all people who are different from the mainstream.  In his fourth grade class, his teacher awarded him “Most likely to become a human rights activist.”  Bearing witness to the things Jillian has had to struggle with and just beholding Jillian’s spirit has inspired her siblings. Jillian has always utilized her amazing intellect, attitude of determination, sense of humor and social skills to achieve great things.  She has always been a supportive and empathetic friend.  Now, in eighth grade, she serves in a leadership role among her peers with IEP’s at school.  She shows them the way and offers support.  Most recently, Jillian was selected to represent Broomfield Heights Middle School at the regional competition for National History Day as she worked so hard on an individual performance research piece on Misty Copeland. Her bravery and determination inspire other youth around her every day. Jillian is a thriving, active member of the Broomfield community and we are grateful to celebrate her achievements tonight!

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