Padgett is grand-prize winner in nationwide contest

CELINA-Kayla Padgett, a 17 year old Celina resident, created the grand prize winning poster in a national contest sponsored by the National Association of Housing Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) with local participation by the Cookeville Housing Authority.
Kayla’s poster features puzzle pieces containing words of contentment – words such as “love,” “togetherness,” “comfort,” and “peace” –along with toys, musical notes, and drawings of family members and friends, with the caption “Home is where good things come together.”
Kayla’s explanation of her entry reads, “My poster on ‘What Home Means to Me’ expresses the key elements of what makes a home. The puzzle, which takes the majority of that poster, shows the pieces that a family must fit together to form a house into a home. In the center is a mountain scene representing the high goal to accomplish a loving home. My family is very musical, so the notes symbolize that. I also included my little neighbor friends who are like family to me. Home to me means more than just a home, it’s the small pieces and things we put in it.”
Each year, 12 winners are selected from around the country, along with several honorable mention awardees.  The 12 winning entries are used to create the annual Housing America’s “What Home Means to Me” calendar.
As grand prize winner, Kayla and her family will attend NAHRO’s Legislative Conference, held in Washington, D.C. in March 2013; the family will also enjoy visits to iconic sites such as Capitol Hill during their time in the nation’s capital. Kayla will also receive a $500 savings bond.
Kayla’s poster will appear on the cover and first page of the 2013 Housing America Calendar; the 11 other winners will appear on the subsequent pages.  The posters will be displayed at NAHRO’s annual conference, and will be sold at an auction to raise money for savings bonds for next year’s winners.  To learn more about the Housing America program, see all winning entries, and purchase a calendar, please visit
“The ‘What Home Means to Me’ calendar has become a tradition with NAHRO, its housing authority and redevelopment agency members, and Housing America,” said Saul Ramirez, Jr., NAHRO CEO.  “Young residents across the nation compete, and the number of entries grows exponentially each year.  It’s heart-warming to see, in living color and in their own words, how home and family enable these children to enjoy comfort, security, peace and happiness that truly nurtures their hopes and dreams.”