By Chris Runge
Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools
March 10, 2017 – When Nestor Gutierrez-Flores isn’t studying or bussing tables at his part-time job at Clemmons Kitchen, he’s scribbling. Last summer, Nestor started to scribble even more as he sketched out ideas for the annual Safe Sober T-shirt Design contest.
He narrowed a hundred ideas down to just one and submitted it. Today, all that scribbling paid off. Nestor’s design won, and a host of local dignitaries including Mayor Allen Joines and Police Chief Barry Rountree, stormed his classroom at the Career Center to surprise him with the news. His parents were also there to congratulate him.
Attorney David Daggett sponsors the contest and the Safe Sober Prom Pledge each year along with partner Griff Shuler of Daggett Shuler Law.
“Of all the mothers I have ever called to tell them their child won, this was the most excited mother I ever heard,” said Daggett. The tears and hugs between Nestor and his parents showed just how excited they all were.
“I wanted to do a design that is exciting. The prom is it! After that we are off to college, so I wanted to do something that was exciting with great colors’,” said Gutierrez-Flores.
The Safe Sofer program is in its 27th year and promotes a drug and alcohol free prom night to high school students across northwest North Carolina. About 250 designs were submitted to the contest.
Nestor’s winning design will be printed on 15,000 t-shirts and given to high school students who sign a pledge to remain drug and alcohol free on prom night. Nestor’s name is on the back of the shirt along with sponsors of the program.
Nestor is a senior at West Forsyth and takes Commercial Art at the Career Center. His teacher, Stephanie Messer, is quite familiar with this scene. A student from her class has won the contest an amazing 8 years in a row.
“This is becoming a very familiar trip every March,” said Daggett.
Along with the honor of winning, Nestor received a $500 scholarship check. He plans to attend Wake Forest University in the fall then remain in the area and become a graphic artist.