News and Events

Dixie County Students Working Against Tobacco Wrap Up Another Year of Youth Tobacco Prevention!
May 24, 2016

The 2015-16 School year marks the end of another year for the Dixie County High School Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) club.  This year has flown by and the DCHS SWAT officers have been very busy working on Tobacco Prevention and educating their peers about how the tobacco industry targets them.

The President of the DCHS SWAT club is Ivey Sapp, a senior that has been an active SWAT member for the past three years.  Ivey plans to go to college for Broadcast Journalism or Secondary English Education. Ivey shared that she would encourage other youth to join SWAT because it “is an excellent way to not only lower the smoking rate but to develop leadership and communication skills.” Ivey was also the Vice-President of SWAT in 2014-15 and attend two Regional SWAT trainings representing Dixie County. 

From L to R: Kentrell Hall, Reece Kruggel, Ebonie Walker, Lora Beth Cooper, Ivey Sapp, Chelsea Deloach, Riley Kruggel and Trevor Hruby. (Missing from photo: Katie Jones)

Vice-President and graduating senior Chelsea DeLoach has four years of SWAT experience.  Chelsea plans to start her future as a Correctional Officer and eventually become a Florida Highway Patrol Officer.  Chelsea shared that “the more people who join SWAT, the more people will know the dangers of tobacco.” In September 2015, Chelsea attended the Regional SWAT Training.

Ebonie Walker, a graduating senior that served as the SWAT Secretary, started working with SWAT in Middle School. Ebony shared that SWAT has given her a better understanding of what really goes on with big tobacco.  This information will help her in her future plans in the field of Business Management.  She feels that she would like to continue to be a part of the Tobacco Free Partnership of Dixie County after graduation because “having a positive impact on at least one life is great!”

Graduating seniors Reece and Riley Kruggel are Co-Senior Representatives for SWAT.  Both plan to join the National Guard and receive Mechanical Engineering Degrees from University of Florida.  They have been members of SWAT for the last three years.  Reece shared that he would like for his younger family members to join SWAT in the future because they could learn more about the dangerous effects of tobacco use.  Riley shared that the public speaking and community events as a SWAT officers will help him in his future plans.

Senior, Trevor Hrby is the Youth Representative and has been a member of SWAT for five years.  Trevor is also one of the youth representatives for the Tobacco Free Partnership of Dixie County. Trevor plans to attend the University of Florida and receive a Bachelor’s degree in Nuclear Engineering and join the Navy as a Naval Reactor Engineer.  He hopes to have a family one day.  SWAT has helped him in his community by helping people realize how horrible the tobacco companies’ products are.   Trevor worries about his brother and hopes that he joins SWAT so that he can also help with tobacco prevention. 

Junior, Lora Beth Cooper has been in SWAT for three years and plans to become an officer again next year.  She has already seen how SWAT has taught her to speak up and help others.  Her community and other students at DCHS have become more aware of the dangers of tobacco and she feels that it is important for children to join SWAT so that they will also be aware of the harmful effects of tobacco. In February, Lora Beth presented to the Dixie County Board of County Commissioners and asked them to adopt a proclamation for Through with Chew Week.

This year has been the first year as a SWAT member for Kentrell Hall.  As a freshman, he has held the Freshman Representative Officer title with pride.  He would like to help people in his community in the future and hopes to be the SWAT Secretary next year. 

Each of these SWAT Officers were also active members of the Tobacco Free Partnership of Dixie County.  The Seniors will be greatly missed.

For more information on the Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Program in Dixie County, contact Melanie Anderson at