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Ponce de Leon Senior Wins $10,000 Hugh Hefner Award

By: WJHG-TV
By: WJHG-TV

Heather Gillman, the Ponce de Leon High School student who won her lawsuit against the Holmes County School District earlier this year, is getting more national recognition.

The Playboy Foundation has selected Gillman and 2-other people as the winners of the 2008 Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment awards.

You may remember, Gillman sued the school district after Ponce de Leon high school principal David Davis banned students from wearing clothes or carrying items that support gay rights. With the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, Gillman, who is not gay, sued for violation of First Amendment rights, and won.

As a result, the school district had to pay the ACLU legal fees of more than 300-thousand dollars, Davis is no longer the principal at Ponce de Leon, and school district personnel had to participate in a sensitivity training course.

Gillman and the other 2-winners will receive their awards in Washington D.C. on October 21st.

When she sued the school district, Gillman only asked for, and received $1,000. The Playboy Foundation will give the high school senior a check for $10,000.


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