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2008 Rogers Scholars graduate Richie Mathes and U.S. Congressman Harold "Hal" Rogers (KY-05)

Former Rogers Scholars graduate Richie Mathes, now a student at Union College, put his leadership skills to work this summer serving as a Henry Clay Intern in U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers’ (KY-05) Washington office.

Mathes, a junior majoring in international business and political science, received an insider’s look at politics on Capitol Hill and witnessed first-hand the impact Congressman Rogers is making in Southern and Eastern Kentucky and on the national level as chairman of the powerful House Appropriations Committee.

“Realizing the cynicism towards politics today, it was refreshing to see the genuine hard work and sincerity of the chairman and his staff,” said Mathes, who graduated from the 2008 Class of Rogers Scholars. “The chairman is a fine example of a gentleman statesman who leads by example instead of cheap rhetoric.”

Rogers Scholars, an intense one-week summer program, provides leadership and exclusive college scholarship opportunities for rising high school juniors within The Center for Rural Development’s 42-county primary service area in Southern and Eastern Kentucky.

“Not only is Richie excelling as a student, but he is also proving himself as a valuable leader for this region,” said Delaney Stephens, youth programs coordinator and community liaison for The Center. “It’s evident, through stories such as this one, that the Rogers Scholars program is effective at developing future leaders for Southern and Eastern Kentucky.”

“After serving as an intern, and graduating from his youth programs, I truly consider myself one of Hal’s Pals,” added Mathes. “I hope one day to have the same impact the chairman has had, and will work hard following his example.”

Rogers Scholars—The Center’s flagship youth program—is named after Congressman Rogers and instills in graduates a desire to build their careers and lives in Southern and Eastern Kentucky.

Mathes is the son of Richard and Sandy Mathes of Corbin.