Clayton A. Bouton High School Announces 2023 Valedictorian and Salutatorian


On May 16,  Principal Kristin DuGuay announced the valedictorian and salutatorian for the Class of 2023. They are Julia Young and Rowan Knauf. 

“As the high school principal, I am proud to celebrate two members of the Class of 2023 whose dedication to excellence has earned them the highest honors of their graduating class,” DuGuay said. “These two exceptional students have poured countless hours into achieving high academic success while still playing active roles as leaders on campus through their various extracurricular activities. Congratulations, Julia and Rowan!”

Each has provided a brief bio outlining their interests at Clayton A. Bouton and their plans for higher education.

Two teens stand in front of Voorheesville Blackbirds banner. They are each holding a certificate and a rose.Julia Young, Class of 2023 Valedictorian

Julia is a New York State-nominated Presidential Scholar and says she has enjoyed almost every academic subject. She has felt most impacted by science, music, and Spanish. She took 12 Advanced Placement courses; her favorites were Physics 1 and Music Theory.

She participated in the Science Olympiad all four years of high school and was treasurer of the club for two years. Julia was heavily involved in the VCSD music program, playing French horn in band and at various NYSSMA festivals, including the All-State in December. Julia sang in select and regular chorus and played piano in jazz band. She has pursued songwriting and composition both inside and outside school by attending summer composition programs, writing a piece for the high school concert band, and playing original music at local venues. She is passionate about distance running and has been on the cross country and track teams since grade 7. Julia was a captain of the cross country team during her senior year when they won the Class D State Championship. She recently ran her first half marathon. 

Since the age of thirteen, Julia has gained real-world experience by working at Emack & Bolio’s in Albany. She is passionate about the outdoors, having helped build a voyageur canoe and completing many expeditions. As a final service project before graduation, Julia is working to improve the Blackbird Paradise at the elementary school.

Julia will attend Princeton University in the fall and is currently undecided in her major.

Rowan Knauf, Class of 2023 Salutatorian

Rowan has been in the Voorheesville school district since kindergarten and has grown up in the community. Throughout high school, they have worked hard and are very proud to find themself in this position. In addition to spending a lot of time and effort in their classes, they have a lot of extracurricular activities and are busy outside of school. 

Rowan is a member of Voorheesville’s Science Olympiad team, Key Club, and National Honor Society, and they spent countless hours volunteering for school productions in the Performing Arts Center, working with sound technology. 

Outside of school, they also spend time working at a job, playing video games, reading, baking and hanging out with friends. 

In the fall, Rowan will continue their education at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona, Florida, majoring in Aerospace Engineering and specializing in Astronautical Engineering at the honors college.