Cleveland Touchdown Club Charities Announces 2023 Memorial Scholarship Recipients

Tommie Benn, III


Jenna Leonard


Amanda Mladek


Alan Murillo-Soto

CLEVELAND – Tommie Benn, III, Jenna Leonard, Amanda Mladek and Alan Murillo-Soto were named recipients of the 2023 Cleveland Touchdown Club Charities (CTCC) Memorial Scholarship, the organization announced on Friday at its annual Gene Hickerson Memorial Golf Outing.

CTCC Memorial Scholarships are awarded annually to graduating Northeast Ohio high school seniors who excel in the classroom, in the community and possess a strong ambition to succeed in college. Each individual will receive a $1,000 scholarship to use at an accredited college or university of their choice during the 2023-24 academic year.

Benn, a recent graduate of Garfield Heights High School (Garfield Heights, Ohio), is the first-time recipient of the Gene Hickerson Memorial Scholarship, a special scholarship to honor Gene Hickerson in 2023. He graduated with a 4.08 GPA while helping publish the GHHS yearbook, was a member of the National Honor Society and has supported a number of local organizations through community service. Benn will be attending Youngstown State University where he will study exercise science with plans to be a sports physical therapist.

Leonard, this year’s recipient of the Dick Zunt Memorial Scholarship, graduated from Riverside High School (Painesville, Ohio) with a 4.00 GPA. She was both a photographer and editor for her high school yearbook, defining her future studies as she will attend Miami (Ohio) University this fall to study sports communications and media. She will join the Miami Football Support Staff this fall, supporting the Digital Design and Football Video Operations Director.

A 2023 graduate of Ravenna High School (Ravenna, Ohio) with a 4.069 GPA, Mladek is the recipient of the Morrie Kono Memorial Scholarship. She was extremely active in supporting the RHS Sports Information Manager, recording statistics, filming and photographing games, and helping manage the RHS Facebook and Twitter accounts. She also participated in marching band, color guard, was a teacher’s aide and a member of the National Honor Society. She will attend Kent State University to pursue a degree in sports management.

Murillo-Soto is this year’s Billy Reynolds Memorial Scholarship Recipient after graduating from Riverside High School with a 3.818 GPA. He is a founding member of the Riverside Elementary Mentors, a program connecting RHS students with elementary students of face different challenges in school. He enjoys weightlifting, soccer, beach volleyball, playing guitar and photography. He will be the first member of his family to attend college when he begins his studies in biomedical engineering at The Ohio State University.

This year’s scholarships are presented in honor of four gentlemen who have a rich history in Northeast Ohio football – Gene Hickerson, Morrie Kono, Billy Reynolds and Dick Zunt. More information on all three individuals can be found on the Cleveland Touchdown Club Charities website.