Town Hall team nominates ‘stand-out’ girl for chamber’s 2013 Citizen of Year award
By Maureen Robertson
In what may be a first for Ramona Chamber of Commerce, a 9-year-old, 52-pound fourth-grader who stands 4 feet 3 inches tall is among 2013 Citizen of the Year nominees.
Alexavia Zetterberg, daughter of Regina and John Zetterberg, joins two publishers, a lawyer, a school board member, a psychiatrist and a plumber for consideration for the award. They’ll learn Sunday who will receive the honor.
“I’m very excited,” Alexavia said. “I’m going to be wearing a black and white dress. I got to go shopping for a new one. It was fun.”
She’ll be with her parents, her grandparents and her aunt and uncle. The chamber’s annual awards dinner, slated for 6 p.m. in San Vicente Resort, also will include San Diego County Supervisor Dianne Jacob administering the oath of office to the 2014 chamber board. In addition, the business and the nonprofit organization of the year will be announced.
“We would like to tell you about a shining example of an ordinary 9-year-old girl making an extraordinary impact right here in our community,” Ramona Town Hall’s Woody Kirkman and Sharon Davis wrote in their nomination letter to the chamber.
A former Miss California Princess and Miss California Junior Princess, Alexavia is known in Ramona for her annual toy drives for Rady Children’s Hospital, her Believe in Miracles organization that benefits families in need in town, and her book drives for Barnett Elementary Library, Ramona Library and Busy Bee Preschool.
Among others benefiting from her efforts are the United Service Organizations (USO), Ramona Fire Department and Vista Hill/Parent Care Family Recovery Centers.
She is “one in a million” to her 16-year-old sister, Alyssa Osborne.
“Though my sister is many things, the word that most describes her is generous,” Alyssa, a sophomore at Ramona High, wrote. “When she was 6 years old, she came home one day saying that she wanted to help the children in the hospital. So she created a toy drive called Alexavia’s Toy Drive for Rady Children’s Hospital.”
Alexavia said a “Ready Freddy” story “about a boy who helps the needy” prompted her, “so then I wanted to do something to help people.” Believe in Miracles started when, a year later, “I was sitting around Christmastime and I was thinking how it would feel not to have a Christmas.”
This year she collected 600 toys for the hospital, and her Believe in Miracles Silent Auction raised $521, enough for 17 Ramona families and their 34 children. Each child received 15 gifts, she said.
Because one Ramona mother slept on the floor while her four children shared one bed, Alexavia brought her a bed, dresser, television and TV stand.
Her mother said, “she’s wise beyond her years.
“She’s just not the normal 9-year-old,” her mother said. “Ever since 4, she knew what she wanted to do in life. She’s always been able to set goals.”
While Alexavia “still goes out and plays,” she thinks about other people before she thinks about herself, her mother added.
Her goal is to be an actress and singer. In August, she signed with an agent in Los Angeles.
“I just love acting,” explained Alexavia. “It’s so much fun. It’s something I love to do.”
The chamber also received letters of support from Alexavia’s teacher and from “proud sixth-generation Ramonan” Joani Georgeson
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