MISS CHAIN OF LAKES OUTSTANDING TEEN
Class of 2020
Class of 2020
Local Director: Click here to update this local page
Platform: Inclusivity for Disability
School: Centennial High School
Director: Katherine Majkrzak
Next Competition Date: January 8, 2022
Miss Chain of Lakes' Outstanding Teen Devon Brandt has a goal to create a more inclusive environment for people with disabilities. "Just because a person has Down syndrome, autism, SMA, EDS, or any other type of disability, does not mean they cannot achieve what any other able-bodied person can. Many people have overcome their perceived limitations, such as Temple Grandin (inventor), Jamie Brewer (actress), Luke Zimmerman (actor), and Jim Abbott (MLB pitcher)." says Devon.
Devon is a junior at Centennial High School in Circle Pines, Minnesota. She plans to go to college to get an undergraduate degree in special education and a master's in administration to become the principal of a specialty school for special needs. She is a student athlete and has earned varsity awards on the swim team. She coaches in the Northern Lights swim program, which is a swim team for children with special needs. She became a “side-by-side” in her church’s special needs program. By doing this, she is the primary caretaker for any child with special needs who comes to the church, giving the child's parents the opportunity to get a break from caretaking so they can participate fully in the worship service.
A large part of her platform is helping children overcome the struggles that are familiar to those growing up with a disability. Devon is particularly empathetic to the insecurity those children feel. She knows first-hand, having struggled herself with autistic tendencies. She has learned to not only advocate for herself but for others who may also be subject to societal misunderstandings.
Devon shows her creativity through singing and songwriting. She loves to learn about other cultures and her family has hosted numerous exchange students. She dances to burn off excess energy, which she must have a lot of because she has volunteered over 100 hours in the last year.