Story by Lindsay Long, Raleigh Norris, Zakiya Austin

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Photo by Lindsay Long

Being a leader is defined as the action of leading a group of people or an organization. Junior Alex Chalgren has portrayed the acts of being a leader by standing up for what he believes in and starting Community Club: a club aimed towards students who share the same gender identity and sexual orientation obstacles, lead by art teacher Jaime Chason.

Along with wanting to promote awareness for the LGBT community, Alex also hopes to pursue a career in politics.

“I don’t know why I’m into politics, it just seems like a part of me, ever since I was a little guy,” Alex said. “I remember when in my third grade class I wanted to be in the Supreme Court and now I want to be president.”

Alex believes that he has the personality to one day change the way our nation is operated.

“I believe that my ideas can create a sense of unity amongst people that may be divided, as well as get things done and achieve goals successfully,” Alex said.

Alex is not the only one who believes that he is able to change our nation. His mother, Janis Chalgren, agrees with him.

“Alex has had a long time interest in politics with a desire to make a difference in people’s lives,” Chalgren said. “He is formulating his views and developing his gifts. I hope Alex will be a leader with a servant’s heart.”

Alex, following his mother’s wish of him having a servant’s heart, always tries his best to please others. In an effort to give back, Alex approached Jaime Chason to help him start Community Club. Mrs. Chason believes that Alex is extremely capable of playing a sturdy leading role in this club.

“Alex being a very social butterfly personality I think is going to reach more than one type of person,” Chason said. “It will also give him confidence that he did something that’s lasting and meaningful to so many people, so I’m glad he came to me to sponsor it because I think it is going to be very beneficial.”

Alex, being cognizant of the fact that gay rights and gender dysphoria issues are typically taboo in society, thinks that promoting these issues will help students feel more comfortable around their peers.

“The goal or mission of this club is to promote awareness and also to provide a safe environment for people who may be in a terrible situation because of their gender identity or sexual orientation, as well as promote a fun environment for straight people and people in the LGBT environment,” Alex said.

Community Club is not just during school hours; the club plans to get together outside of school to help others around them.

“We will be doing community service projects and things of the sort,” Alex said.

Other than politics and helping others to achieve happiness while dealing with the troubles of gender identities and sexual orientation, Alex has many other hobbies.

“Alex loves music and is either listening to music or singing,” Chalgren said. “He loves history discussions, especially with his father, who also has a love and knowledge of history.”

Overall, Alex is very excited about starting the club and the benefits it will bring to Dutch Fork.  

“Prior to coming to Dutch Fork High School last year, I wanted to make a stand for who I am and I wanted to help others to do the same, and I didn’t have any idea how public high school would accept me as a random new person in a sophomore class,” Alex said. “I decided I was just going to come out with it and I’m going to make a stand. With Mrs. Chason’s help, [my idea] is now a club.”