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Local students earn Progress Energy Merit Award Scholarship

ST. PETERSBURG, FL. (August 1, 2011) – Eight local high school graduates have earned Progress Energy Merit Award Scholarships this year. Progress Energy awards the scholarships annually to qualifying college-bound children of company employees. The awards are worth $1,500 per year and are renewable annually for up to four years.

Five scholarship winners are from Citrus County:

Audrey Basar, of Dunnellon, the daughter of Erika Tuchbaum and Stephen Biro and a graduate of Lecanto High School through the Citrus County Virtual School Program.  Audrey will attend St. Petersburg College and is interested in the fashion industry.

Jacqueline Dixon, of Homosassa, the daughter of Charles and Phyllis Dixon and a graduate of Lecanto High School. Jacqueline will attend the University of Miami to study anthropology and biology.

Mallory Oxford, of Crystal River, the daughter of Charles and Susan Oxford and a graduate of Crystal River High School. Mallory will attend the University of Florida to study chemistry.

Kimberly Swartz, of Hernando, the daughter of Jeffrey and Kathleen Swartz and graduate of Lecanto High School. Kimberly will attend the College of Charleston Honors Program to study history.

Michael Zawacki, of Dunnellon, the son of Michael and Susan Zawacki and a graduate of New Testament Christian School. Michael will attend the College of Central Florida and is interested in dentistry.

One scholarship winner is from Marion County:

Andrew Brewer, of Ocala, the son of William "Bill" and Julie Brewer and a graduate of St. John Lutheran High School. Andrew will attend Campbell University majoring in business.

One scholarship winner is from Orange County:

Rachel Ellerbe, of Ocoee, the daughter of Douglas and Barbara Ellerbe and a graduate of Ocoee High School. Rachel will attend Rollins College to study elementary education.


Progress Energy Florida, a subsidiary of Progress Energy (NYSE: PGN), provides electricity and related services to more than 1.6 million customers in Florida. The company is headquartered in St. Petersburg, Fla., and serves a territory encompassing more than 20,000 square miles including the cities of St. Petersburg and Clearwater, as well as the Central Florida area surrounding Orlando. Progress Energy Florida is pursuing a balanced approach to meeting the future energy needs of the region. That balance includes increased energy-efficiency programs, investments in renewable energy technologies and a state-of-the-art electricity system. For more information about Progress Energy, visit

Media contact: Progress Energy Florida 24-hour media line, 866.520.6397

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