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Teen working for women's equality

October 20, 2006|by ERIN JULIUS

HAGERSTOWN - Brandi Koontz doesn't think that women get recognized for all of their accomplishments.

"I don't think women are treated equally," she said.

That's why she recently joined the Washington County Commission for Women. At 14 years old, Brandi is the youngest person to ever join the commission.

Brandi applied because she wanted a way of "equalizing women's rights," she said.

She and her grandmother, Mary Jane Koontz, went through the application and interview process together, and were appointed to the commission on Sept. 19.

They are the first grandmother-granddaughter team on the commission, said Mary Jane Koontz.

Brandi describes the commission as "concerned with helping the families and helping the people" in Washington County.

Brandi is part of the commission's essay committee, which runs an essay contest for students during Women's History Month in March. She also is working on a Christmas project with the commission, hoping to make a merry Christmas for a small group of children.

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Mary Jane Koontz has given her granddaughter a lot to live up to, having started her own business, Hub City Express.

Brandi said that, like her grandmother, she wants to be a woman that does something great.

A freshman at South Hagerstown High School, Brandi takes honors algebra because "math comes very easily to me." She also twirls flags in the band's color guard and wants to play tennis in the spring.

She worked two jobs this summer and saved her money to buy a laptop computer and an iPod portable music player.

When she was in sixth grade, Brandi decided that she wanted to be a lawyer. She would stay up late watching Law and Order, a television program about police and courts in New York City, and said she wanted to be like the female detectives and lawyers on the show.

She has lived in Washington County all of her life with her parents, Ronnie and Wanda, and her brother Adam, 11.

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