Outstanding Citizen Scholarship Award Winners

We are happy to announce the recognition of one outstanding young person who demonstrates the importance of perseverance and hard work and stands as an influence to citizens everywhere of the value of strength, education, and social justice.

2022 Winner: Jayla Johnson

 Hello! My name is Jayla S Johnson. I was born in Dallas and have been raised here my entire, so I have seen all the amazing diversity this city has. I’ve always been fascinated by about owning my own law firm to help others receive the justice they deserve since I was a young child. I want to study business marketing in hopes of better understanding the business side so that once I finish law school I will have an understanding of how I should proceed with my goal. I have a true passion for helping others with the education and resources I was given. My ambition comes from reading and witnessing the unfair justice system and wanting to defend others who may be suffering from it. My community means so much to me and I want to be an asset that can help others who may not have the finance or knowledge to do so.

Once I was notified about the winning of the scholarship, I was taken completely by surprise. I was so happy and excited that I could not stop jumping up and down. I am appreciative that I was given the financial means to contribute to my education and I will be sure to remember who helped me along the way.  This scholarship does not only help me but help my future clients and law firm as well.


2021 Winner: L.S. King

LS King is a senior at the University of Mississippi in Oxford majoring in Integrated Marketing Communications with a minor in Business Administration. She is a Talbert Scholar, Provost Scholar, and member of several campus organizations. The first Longest Table she organized and hosted was at her high school in Tallahassee, Florida, and she continues to mentor students there who now host the event. The first Longest Table at Ole Miss was held in 2019, canceled by COVID in 2020, but back on the schedule for the 2021-22 school year. King is unsure of what she will do after graduation but is considering graduate school.

I am completely shocked to win this scholarship and so grateful for people like the MD Defense Group who are generous enough to help fund scholarships. It is completely unexpected and out-of-the-blue. I really enjoy bringing people together for a greater cause so it’s nice to be recognized for this endeavor. However, it’s also something that involves many more people than just myself. My goal is to one day be successful enough to pay it forward by funding my own scholarship. Thank you so much for affirming this project and my efforts.”

2020 Winner: Omar Hamza

My name is Omar Hamza. I’m a first-generation Syrian-American who grew up in a small town called Port Neches, TX and graduated from Lamar University with a bachelors in Chemistry. I am currently a medical student at Texas A&M College of Medicine. I hope to one day attain my MD and work alongside other physicians in underserved areas all over the U.S. and overseas!

“I am ecstatic to hear that I’ve won the 2020 Outstanding Citizen Scholarship! Being in medical school, I’ve had to cut costs wherever I can to afford the cost of attending school as well as living expenses. This scholarship will help me immensely and allow me to continue focusing on school and follow my dreams!”

2019 Winner: P.C. King

P.C. King is a freshman at Mississippi State University in the College of Veterinary Medicine Early Entry Program. She is studying to be a veterinarian. In her spare time she works with the Mississippi State ACCESS program with differently abled students and is a member of Tri Delta sorority.

“I am very thankful for this scholarship and I am honored to be selected for the Outstanding Citizenship Scholarship. I hope to one day repay the company generosity by being able to fund another student’s academic dreams. Thank you very much for this honor.”

2017 Winner: Katerina Orgunov

Katerina Orgunov was born in Ukraine and immigrated with her family as religious refugees as a young child. Growing up in the United States, she developed a deep love for people around the world and dreams to make it better. She is an incoming sophomore at Baylor University majoring in Business Fellows, economics, and accounting with minors in history and religion on the pre-law track with honors. She came to Baylor with strong interests in business and politics and aspired to intern in D.C. and serve as the first Slavic-American member of Congress one day. While these are still passions of hers, her time at Baylor has turned her focus to advocating and improving the lives of others in a tangible way through non-profits and service.

She currently leads Dream Outside the Box, a nonprofit aimed at providing weekly vocational programming to low-income children in Waco, as well as volunteering with her church and serving as an officer for Baylor UNICEF, advocating for children’s rights. She feels a calling to use her education and energy to help others in their darkest times, whether it be by founding her own non-profit in the future or going on to law school and working with an organization that provides pro-bono law services to sex trafficking survivors.

Ms. Orgunov finds winning the 2017 Outstanding Citizen Scholarship as a great honor. She feels incredibly thankful for as it contributes to funding my continuing education at Baylor University. She says paying for college herself would be impossible without the generosity of scholarship programs like this one, and it makes a huge difference in her life as it allows her to continue learning, serving, and working towards her dreams. She felt ecstatic upon receiving the call notifying her that she won the Outstanding Citizen award, and can’t express how grateful she is. She is thankful to Attorney Fastovsky and all involved for this scholarship and the life change it enables!

2016 Winner: Lena Illig

Lean Illig is the 2016 award winner of the Oustanding Citizen ScholarshipIn 2016, Lena Illig, a senior of the University of Alaska Anchorage, is the winner of the Outstanding Citizen Scholarship, celebrating a pursuit of further education and good citizenship in the community. Being involved in various student organizations in Anchorage, Lena showcases an exemplary history on her pursuit to law enforcement of standing up for what she believes in and helping others.

Ms. Illig is motivated to finish her last semesters at her university, and her future plans are to go into state or federal law enforcement, as she begins applications at multiple police and law enforcement agencies in the United States. Her extensive involvement in organizations such as the National Guard, UAA Army ROTC, Planned Parenthood, the Anchorage Police Department, and Women in Federal Law Enforcement, demonstrate the leadership roles she has pursued and excelled at as she continues training and learning.

Lena is passionate about standing up for others in the pursuit of justice, and is passionate about working with those harmed from domestic violence and sexual assault. She wants to use her extensive training and involvement in her Anchorage community, through advocacy groups and law enforcement, to be fully prepared for making effective social change.

Ms. Illig demonstrates an exemplary citizenship and her active involvements and pursuit of education show us this is merely the beginning of great things to come from this outstanding woman.