Pioneer Athlete Spotlight on Fernando Perez, Clayton Valley Charter High

Grade: Senior
School: Clayton Valley
Charter High
Sport: Track and Field

CONCORD, CA (May 30, 2024) — “Track and field saved my life,” senior runner Fernando Perez reminisces, reflecting on his fight back to the track. Perez was first introduced to running in seventh grade when he joined the St. Bonaventure CYO cross country team. There, he developed his passion for running, which has translated to his four years on Clayton Valley Charter’s varsity track and field team.

Last summer, before his senior year Perez was diagnosed with stage 2 cancer. He beat it, which he attributes to the strong, determined mindset that running helped him develop. In fact, he says, “I knew beating cancer would be nowhere near as challenging as training for a 400.”

Despite that setback, Perez has accomplished a lot on and off the track. His junior year he qualified for Arcadia Invitational, Mt. SAC Relays and the CIF State Meet, as well as winning multiple awards: Rookie of the Year, MVP twice and the Eagle Award, which is the highest honor for an Ugly Eagle track runner. His coach Keisha Lowe had this to say, “Fernando is a coach’s perfect athlete. He constantly works hard to better himself. He’s supportive of his entire team. He’s that one you can always depend on, on and off the track. He is going to give 110% every single time. He doesn’t let his limitations determine how high he can go. Fernando has been an excellent example of a true athlete in spirit and talent.”

Off the track

Perez also has many accomplishments off the track. He maintains a 3.69 weighted GPA as well as managing many roles in clubs. Also, he is president of CVC’s La Raza club, National Honor Society and is the Associated Student Body president. He is also a Link Crew and Blue Crew commissioner, Faith Club leader, sports medicine student and a CBCA Youth Ambassador. Perez hopes to continue running in the future, work his way to becoming a physician for a professional sports team and stay cancer free.

CVCHS student journalist Corinne Jeandheur wrote this Spotlight.

The Pioneer congratulates Fernando and thanks Athlete Spotlight sponsors Dr. Laura Lacey & Dr. Christopher Ruzicka who have been serving the Clayton and Concord area for over three decades at Family Vision Care Optometry.

Do you know a young athlete who should be recognized? Perhaps he or she has shown exceptional sportsmanship, remarkable improvement, or a great heart for the sport. Send your nomination for the Pioneer Athlete Spotlight today to

Corinne Jeandheur
Corinne Jeandheur

Corinne Jeandheur is a junior at Clayton Valley Charter High School.  She runs on the CVCHS cross country team in the fall as well as competing on the track and field team in the spring.  She also plays the piano and bakes in her free time.  Jeandheur is a member of the CVCHS Engineering and Design Academy and concluded her sophomore year with a 4.33 GPA.  She is serving as co-president of the California Scholarship Federation at Clayton Valley Charter this school year and continuing her academic and community involvement in the National Honor Society. She is very pleased to be writing the monthly Athlete Spotlight for the Pioneer.