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Alex Banning: Pinewood’s Renaissance Man

SONIA STANGENES

STAFF WRITER

If you have not heard of senior Alex Banning, you probably do not go to Pinewood School. Banning can be found everywhere across campus from leading cheers at basketball games to managing special effects for the theater department.

Banning is an evergreen, a student who has been a Pinewood student since kindergarten. His classmates know him for his sense of humor and his commitment to the Pinewood community.

One of Banning’s biggest roles at Pinewood is as this year’s Associated Student Body president. He is the voice of the announcements and the leader of spirit rallies.

“It’s been really rewarding being able to lead a group and take charge in certain activities and being able to shape these activities and events in a way that I think would be best for the school. I like having a better relationship with Mr. Gardner and being able to advocate more for the students on no homework days and certain events and having better communications between students and teachers,” Banning said.

ASB supervisor Jackee Bruno has had the chance to work closely with Banning. He is continuously impressed with Banning’s initiative.

“He is not afraid to take on tasks or to stand out front and be noticed. He has a magnetism that brings others along with him that attracts other students of all ages,” Bruno said.

The Pinewood Performing Arts department would not be complete without Banning’s expertise in sound design. He takes charge of the sound design for the theater department, including anything involving microphones or headsets.

Banning is known as the “hype man” at sports games and is the founder of the Pinewood Spirit Squad. Not a game goes by where Banning isn’t leading cheers, distracting free throw shooters, and shouting “I believe” at the end of each game.

“That’s one of my favorite things I get to do because that’s something I would do whether I had the position or not. I just enjoy going to all the basketball games, taunting the other team’s players, and cheering on our players. My goal is to make opposing parents as mad as possible, and I think I accomplish that pretty well,” Banning said.

Pinewood girls varsity basketball coach Doc Scheppler will miss Banning’s cheering for the Pinewood teams next year.

“It makes people smile when you’re playing a game like that and you see him getting all enthusiastic. It kind of brings you into a relaxed state of, ‘this is fun’ rather than ‘oh my god I have to play well.’ I think for our team, it helps the spirit of playing with joy,” Scheppler said.

While Banning is heavily involved within the high school community, he sees himself in an entirely different place in the next ten years. Instead of being front-and-center, he sees himself working behind the scenes in a business or technological field.

“A lot of things that people see me do are things that are in a sense, easily seen. You can see me in assemblies and you can see me as ASB president. You go to a show and read the program or one of the directors thanks me by name or you go to a sports game and you can see me cheering on our team, but I also have a lot of interests outside of that,” Banning said.

What people may not know is that  Banning maintains the website for The Perennial. Additionally, he is currently working with a consulting firm, and he has started his own company, Gizno LLC, with Bruno.

“This company is basically a front for us to be able to license these patents to companies who want to develop them or are interested in buying or developing them, or for ourselves in the future if we are ever interested in developing these projects,” Banning said.

Banning’s widespread interests and endeavors are incredibly admirable. The Pinewood community is looking forward to seeing what other amazing feats Banning will accomplish in the years to come.

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