Each year Sonoma Valley High School names its “students of the year” – graduating seniors who exemplify the “Dragon ideal.”

Here’s a look at the 2017 honorees:

Jose Antonio Zamora-Saldana has been described as a shy student who took a chance in eighth grade and joined the leadership class at Altimira Middle School. He says that his life changed instantly and he has not looked back since. Jose is described as one of the most involved students on campus, planning student activities, running for student offices and improving the SVHS culture. This year he served as the senior class president.

Jose was the first student selected to help build the high school’s new PLUS program, which centers on student social and emotional well-being. He also served on the committee that worked with a designer to update the school logo.

Jose is excited to attend Chico State this fall.

Hannah Louise Ford-Monroe joined Sonoma Valley High after nine years of homeschooling.

Hannah is known for her contagious enthusiasm and for being one of the busiest students on campus. The students heard her voice every Monday and Thursday when she read the high school’s daily bulletin. She is an active PLUS leader and as the school’s “student voice” she attended monthly Board of Education meetings and sought to represent her constituents honestly and accurately. Her teachers say that Hannah “embodies the Dragon ideal.”

Hannah took her first video-production class as a sophomore and says she was hooked. She has participated in the Sonoma Valley Film Festival the last two years and looks forward to taking film classes as a freshman at UC Santa Barbara.

While Brandon Isaiah Barmore passed away in March of this year, the SVHS administration felt strongly that the school’s entire community has been changed for the better because of him. Teachers describe Brandon as having had a keen enjoyment for life as evidenced by the number of “hats” he wore on any given day. He thoroughly enjoyed cooking in his culinary arts elective at school, as well as at home. He enjoyed competing in athletics and proudly represented the Dragons on the wrestling mat, in the pool, and on the track. Determined to work hard, be successful, and have the utmost fun while accomplishing a “win” made Brandon an asset to each of his teams, said his coaches. Brandon was also an avid environmentalist and his senior project was focused on sustaining the local bee population in Sonoma.

And Brandon was a Dragon. Sonoma’s 2017 Mr. Dragon in fact. Not only was he well known as a student, an athlete, an actor, and a leader, he was also the captain of the forensics team, a member of the Model UN club, a member of the Mock Trial team, and a leader in LinkCrew. The SVHS staff was pleased to honor Brandon Barmore in memoriam as Student of the Year.

Email Lorna at lorna.sheridan@sonomanews.com.