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DHS Top 10 grads: exceptional in every way

Denison High School’s “Top Ten” graduating seniors of the Class of 2022 embody excellence in all they do. They are exceptional students, responsible leaders and involved citizens who challenge themselves every day to do and be their best. They are also kind, caring, helpful and respectful. They’ve chosen to take the tough courses and work hard to excel, to be exemplary role models, and to serve their school and community in every way possible.

“It is with great pride and grateful hearts that we salute the incredible accomplishments of these exceptionally bright and talented young people,” said DHS Principal Dr. Cavin Boettger. “They have brought great pride to their families as well as our school district and our entire community. We salute them not only for what they have achieved at DHS, but for all that they will accomplish as they continue to work hard and succeed at ever-higher levels.”

Denison High School’s Class of 2022 Top 10 graduating seniors are:

Valedictorian Luke Sparlin is the son of Debra Sparlin and Jason Sparlin. He has served his community as Alter Server at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, a volunteer with Helping Hands through the National Honor Society and DHS Student Council, and offered middle school tennis clinics during the summer. As an active and involved leader at DHS, Luke has served as Student Council President, participated in West Point Summer Leadership Experience, attended and participated in Naval Academy Summer Seminar, served on the DHS Student Council Board of Directors, and served as a NSHSS Ambassador. Extracurricular activities have included National Honor Society, DHS Varsity Tennis, DHS Student Council and the DHS Band. Luke plans to attend a U.S. Service Academy and pursue a degree related to Space Science. His ultimate goal is to work for a space agency as an astronaut.

Salutatorian Addison Branum is the daughter of Amanda Edmiston and Jason Branum. She has served her community as a coordinator and participant in numerous National Honor Society volunteer events including community clean-up events, blanket drives, food drives, 5K charitable events and fundraisers as well as induction ceremonies and other community building activities. As a school leader, Addison has served as President of the National Honor Society and been an active member of the DHS Student Council. Extracurricular activities include Denison High School’s National Honor Society President, three years of Musical Theatre, various Student Council projects and programs, HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) and DHS Art. Addison plans to attend Texas Woman’s University to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry with the goal of attending medical school to become a pediatric cardiologist.

Haidyn Peterson is the daughter of Chris and David Peterson. She has served her community as a Monday Night Cat volunteer at DAWG, a Summer Camp volunteer at Frank Buck Zoo where she mentored under zookeepers, and various National Honor Society events and activities including the DISD 5K for Kindness, community clean-up and trash pick-up activities, and the Valentine’s candy grams project. As a leader at DHS, Haidyn served as Editor-in-Chief of the DHS Yearbook Staff, National Honor Society Parliamentarian, Senior Class Secretary and a member of the DHS Student Council. Extracurricular activities include National Honor Society, Photography for Yearbook Staff for three years, Tennis through grade 12, Cello/Orchestra in grades four through 12, Student Council for four years, and Den-teens for four years. Haidyn plans to attend a four-year university to earn a bachelor’s degree in computer science and either chemistry or environmental science. She then plans to apply for graduate school and pursue a career in cybersecurity or wildlife conservation.

Jose Ariza is the son of Sandra Salas and Fernando Salas. He has served his community as a member of the National Honor Society, the DHS Band, a Band Buddy during his junior year, and a member of Tri-M Music Honor Society his junior year. As a leader at DHS, he served as Mellophone Section Leader his sophomore, junior and senior years, and Principal French Horn all four years at DHS. Extra-curricular activities include Touch of Gold Marching Band for four years, Wind Ensemble for four years, Jazz Band his junior and senior years, Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps two years, and Tennis two years. Ariza plans to attend the University of Texas at Austin and major in Chemical Engineering.

Peyton Johnson is the son of Jared Johnson and Rebecca Johnson. He has served his community as a volunteer teachers aid at Mayes Elementary, a volunteer with Helping Hands Food Pantry for four years, and a volunteer reader with 3rd graders at Terrell Elementary School in 2021. He also helped build a ramp for a wheelchair-bound man with the Texas Ramp Project in 2019, and worked with the City of Denison for the Doc Holliday Festival in 2021. As a leader, Peyton has served as Executive President of the National Honor Society, Vice President of the DHS Class of 2022, a member of the Student Council Board of Directors, a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Leadership Team, and Captain of the DHS Baseball Team. Peyton plans to attend the Mays School of Business at Texas A&M University as a Business Honors student and Finance major with the goal of a career in sports business or general business.

Landry Massenburg is the son of Bryan and Kerri Massenburg. He has served his community through participation in numerous community service programs including Denison Helping Hands, Meals on Wheels, and working with his youth group at Waples United Methodist Church. As a leader, Landry served his DHS football team as a varsity starter in football for three years, a member of the Board of Directors of the DHS Student Council, and Executive Vice President of the DHS Chapter of the National Honor Society. Extracurricular activities include DHS Basketball for two years, DHS Track for two years, and DHS Football for all four years of high school. He is an member of the DHS Student Council and the National Honor Society, and is an active member of Waples United Methodist Church. Landry plans to attend Texas A&M University and major in some kind of engineering, hopefully mechanical engineering.

Avery Martin is the daughter of Jason and Lisa Martin. She has served her community by helping prepare and run the National Honor Society Induction Ceremony, participating in community trash pick-ups, leading the 2021 Texas Thespians Festival, assisting with bagging and distributing breakfast bags for students, leading workshops for Texas Thespians, contacting and meeting with representatives advocating for Theatre In Our Schools Month. As a leader, Avery has served as Vice President of the National Honor Society, been one of 19 State Thespian officers in Texas Thespians, and served as a member of the International Thespian Student Leadership Council in the nationwide Thespian Society. Extracurricular activities have included DHS Theatre, the National Honor Society, and DHS Student Council. Avery plans to attend Texas Woman’s University and major in Pure Mathematics with the future ambition of obtaining a teaching degree to become an Algebra teacher.

William Gillespie is the son of Chris and Kim Gillespie. He has served his community as a Counselor for the Christian Theater Workshop and an involved leader for sports games at Vacation Bible School. He has also delivered cans to Denison Helping Hands and served a volunteer for the City of Denison’s Doc Holliday Festival. As a DHS leader, Will has served as Executive Treasurer on the DHS National Honor Society committee, participating in numerous events and activities sponsored by NHS. Extra-curricular activities have included Varsity football, DHS Track and Field, Classical Guitar and the National Honor Society. Will plans to attend Texas A&M University to pursue a degree in Computer Science Engineering.

Caitlyn Trobaugh is the daughter of Christine Carter and Aaron Trobaugh. She has served her community through involvement and volunteerism with Master Key Ministries Food Pantry, Denison Helping Hands, Free Tutoring program at Scott Middle School, a Walk to End Alzheimer’s, and Relay for Life. As a leader, Caitlyn has served as Varsity Head Cheerleading Captain for two years and as a DHS Student Council officer. Extracurricular activities have included Varsity Cheer for four years, Den-teens for one year, Student Council for four years, National Honor Society for two years, and Teaching Practicum for one year. Caitlyn plans to attend a four-year university to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Economics with a focus on Mathematics. She then plans to obtain a Master’s Degree in Economics with the goal of becoming a Data Scientist.

Hannah Grinspan is the daughter of Eva Smith and Johnny Grinspan. She has served her community as an active volunteer for Denison Helping Hands, Denison ISD 5K for Kindness, numerous service projects of the DHS Chapter of the National Honor Society, and as a Lakeway United Methodist Church Vacation Bible School leader. Hannah has also served her school in a leadership role as DHS Student Council Secretary. Extracurricular activities have included DHS Varsity Softball for four years, DHS Student Council for four years, and National Honor Society for two years. Hannah plans to attend a four-year university to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology. She then plans to attend Dental School to become an orthodontist.



On May 21st at 8:30 p.m., Denison High School’s Top 10 graduating seniors lead the DHS Class of 2022 onto Gerard Field at Munson Stadium for this year’s Commencement ceremonies. Pictured are Top 10 graduates, left to right, back row: Caitlyn Trobaugh, Avery Martin, Landry Massenburg, Will Gillespie and Hannah Grinspan; front row: David Ariza, Salutatorian Addison Branum, Valedictorian Luke Sparlin, Haidyn Peterson and Peyton Johnson.

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