Meritorious Service Awards » 2013 Recipients

2013 Recipients

Central Valley School Board members announced and recognized six district-wide 2013 Meritorious Service Award recipients during the Board meeting held March 26, 2013. The annual awards recognize outstanding service to students and are presented in four categories (Certificated Employee, Classified Employee, Community Member/Organization and Team.)


2013 Meritorious Service Award Recipients:


Leanne Donley, Central Valley High School – Certificated Employee
Leanne is described by her peers as, “having a gift for balancing students’ needs and development with the goals and philosophies of the school.” More notably, she is recognized for making a difference in the lives of future leaders. For more than 12 years, Leanne has been providing hundreds of students and staff with an unforgettable experience at Central Valley High School’s student leadership two-day “Make a Difference Camp.” Her dedication, professionalism, leadership and care for students energize them with determination to make a good school climate even better with their words, actions and attitudes. Leanne leads by example by leading post-camp activities to ensure the great ideas developed at camp are carried out to make a positive difference at CVHS.

Michelle Schimmels, McDonald Elementary – Certificated Employee
Michelle is highly dedicated to students with special needs and their socialization within the entire school community. In 2009, she started a program for Autistic students called Alternative Instruction which has been hailed a complete success. Michelle’s ability to change her students’ lives has an effect on everyone who works with her. Students, parents and colleagues alike admire, trust and respect her for her dedication, humbleness and her way of approaching life with a smile on her face and love in her heart. She is sought out for her expertise, admired for her forthrightness and has become a mentor to others.

Sandi Durrant, Broadway Elementary – Classified Employee
“Constant kindness and friendliness,” “epitome of grace under pressure,” “the calm amidst the storm” and “Wonder Woman” are all descriptions used by those who work with Head Secretary Sandi Durrant. Sandi goes well beyond her colleagues’ expectations as a head secretary. She is organized, thorough, always kind to everyone, and goes above and beyond in every way. She has a special heart for students who are in the office with a loose tooth, a broken heart, good work to share, or a slip that shows their behavior is improving. She has a great sense of humor and is truly a gift to Broadway and all who enter.

Dawn Faughender, North Pines Middle School – Classified Employee
Early to work and late to stay, Paraeducator Dawn Faughender is always ready to help out where needed. Rather than focusing on the clock, this special education para is more concerned with what her students need and how she can help meet those needs. Her efforts extend beyond the classroom and into the entire school and district. On her break times, Dawn has tutored struggling students who are too embarrassed to ask for help, but feel safe asking her. She works the game clock and scores for various sports, makes herself available for afterschool and Saturday Cub-Pride activities, and volunteers her time to share information about district ballot initiatives. She never gives up on her students and is always there to pick them up and keep them moving forward.

Dr. Roger Lent, University High School – Community Member/Organization
Dr. Lent has volunteered in science classrooms four days a week for the past 15 years, engaging and entertaining hundreds of students with his science demonstrations and songs. He has written more than 50 songs about science, set to various tunes over the years. He’s been a community servant his entire adult life. Dr. Lent is also Colonel Lent. He was a pilot in the Vietnam War, and returned to earn his PhD and teach Biochemistry at the Air Force Academy for more than 20 years. In retirement he taught at Spokane Falls Community College for 10 years, and then has focused his time helping students at University High School learn math and science. Students love his demonstrations and songs that engage and reinforce the concepts they learn in the classroom.

District Nutrition Services Team, Learning and Teaching Center – Team (members include Jeannette Beatty, Holly Berg, Farrah Johnson and Denice Kwate).
Good nutrition and well-fed bodies are an integral part of student achievement, and the Nutrition Services Team is committed to providing daily, beneficial nourishment to students. This team went through significant changes over the past year including new regulations, audits, a new ordering system and change in staff, yet they continue to provide excellence on multiple levels and provide the solid base needed for everyone to work well. The team visited all 22 schools to coach the various cooks in all areas affected by the changes. They work together and with staff and parents to ensure students get the best product possible. No matter the obstacle, breakfast and lunch are served properly within guidelines and on time. Their enthusiasm, thoroughness, kindness and patience are felt by students, parents and staff alike.

2013 Meritorious Service Award Nominees
Elementary Schools
Adams Elementary
  • Sherry Arland, Classified Employee
Broadway Elementary
  • Katie Ferris, Certificated Employee
  • Judy Polley, Certificated Employee
  • Sandi Durrant, Classified Employee
  • Sandy Wing, Classified Employee
Chester Elementary
  • Karen Helma, Certificated Employee
  • “It Takes a Village”, Team (Trudy Byus, Theresa Cutler, Irma Gross, Becki Herndon, Mike Hubble, Annette Lamon, Linda Maravilla, Tina Simpson and Sharon Watkins)
Greenacres Elementary
  • Greenacres All School Staff, Team
Liberty Lake Elementary
  • Pat Lutzenberger and Linda Dockrey of Liberty Lake Kiwanis Club, Community Member/Organization
  • K-Kids Staff Liaisons, Team (Julie Morgan and Jenni Spear)
McDonald Elementary
  • Kara Boyles, Certificated Employee
  • Carol Bray, Certificated Employee
  • Eric Dobney, Certificated Employee
  • Jan Frank, Certificated Employee
  • Michelle Schimmels, Certificated Employee
  • Mona Bak, Classified Employee
  • Tammy Mansfield, Classified Employee
  • George Berryman, Community Member/Organization
  • McDonald PTO Board, Community Member/Organization (Tera Beier, Denise Cajigas,
  • Melissa Faire, Samantha Griffiths, Mary Sue Haberman, Sandie Lowry and Amy Stone)
  • Supervisory Team, Team (Scott Anderson, Mona Bak, Kathy Barton, Tammy Mansfield, Tonya Norris, Kathy Poffenberger, Nancy Rabideaux, Heather Raynor, Linda Sparley and Sharon Talarico)
Opportunity Elementary
  • Andrea Framstad, Certificated Employee
  • Mandi Poindexter, Certificated Employee
  • Suzanne Cooper, Classified Employee
  • Brenda Rennaker, Classified Employee
  • Ada LaClaire, Community Member/Organization
Ponderosa Elementary
  • Heather Brown, Certificated Employee
  • Colleen Nilson, Classified Employee
Progress Elementary
  • Matt Chisholm, Certificated Employee
  • Rozanne Caruso, Certificated Employee
  • Wanda Lewis, Certificated Employee
  • Progress Staff, Team
South Pines Elementary
  • Andrea Bennett, Certificated Employee
  • Marianne Mack, Certificated Employee
  • Jim Olson, Certificated Employee
  • Cheryl Chandler, Classified Employee
  • Stu Lee, Community Member/Organization
  • Sue Mellish and Cherie Hackney, Team (Cherie Hackney and Sue Mellish)
Sunrise Elementary
  • Sue McCollum, Certificated Employee
  • Greg Nicosia, Classified Employee
  • Carol Nevrly, Community Member/Organization
  • Therapy Support Team, Team (Corbin Anderson, Stacia Kapelke and Ali Vining)
University Elementary
  • Stephanie Martin, Certificated Employee
  • Barb Carlson, Classified Employee
  • John Langdon, Classified Employee
  • Leanne Rainwater, Classified Employee
  • Carolyn Schafer, Community Member/Organization
  • Educational Assistants, Team (Dani Crandal and Sandi Nelson)
Middle Schools
Bowdish Middle School
  • Roger Campbell, Certificated Employee
  • Nancy Dean, Certificated Employee
  • Pam Sperline, Certificated Employee
  • Ann Warner, Certificated Employee
  • Maureen Weisbeck, Certificated Employee
  • Angie Raninger, Classified Employee
  • Jerilyn Matthews and Sherry McLean, Community Member/Organization
Evergreen Middle School
  • Lori Klassen, Classified Employee
  • Carol Schuchart, Classified Employee
  • Sandy Call, Community Member/Organization
  • Caroline Hutto, Community Member/Organization
Greenacres Middle School
  • Nichole Clegern, Certificated Employee
  • Mason Flemmer, Certificated Employee
  • Cherie Holm, Certificated Employee
  • Sue Garison, Classified Employee
  • Teresita Kissinger, Classified Employee
  • Greenacres Middle School PTA, Community Member/Organization
  • Phil Champlin – HUB, Community Member/Organization
  • Molly Merz, Community Member/Organization
North Pines Middle School
  • Dawn Faughender, Classified Employee
High Schools
Central Valley High School
  • Susan Dolan, Certificated Employee
  • Leanne Donley, Certificated Employee
  • Life Enhancement Through Education in Music (LETEM) (Katy Dolan and Philip Howard), Community Member/Organization
University High School
  • David Smith, Certificated Employee
  • Tammy Lallier, Classified Employee
  • “The Dynamic Duo” Wendie Ramsey and Linda Tabish, Community Member/Organization
  • Dr. Roger Lent, Community Member/Organization
Non-Traditional Schools & Education Centers
Barker High School
  • Lynn Kovacich, Certificated Employee
CV Early Learning Center
  • Pat McKee, Classified Employee
  • Kitchen Staff, Team (Darlene Boyer, Brenda Briggs, Kay Irons, Natalia Meleshko)
  • OT/PT Staff, Team (Kristi Conley, Colleen Field, Kathleen Kellen, Holly Valley, Diana Voss)
CV Kindergarten Center
  • Cheri Johnson, Certificated Employee
  • Marylou Moglia, Certificated Employee
  • Bev Burkhalter, Classified Employee
  • Scott Doering, Classified Employee
  • Susan Hersburger, Community Member/Organization
Learning and Teaching Center - District Office
  • Patti Simmelink, Classified Employee
  • Debbie Ahlers, Classified Employee
  • Open Eye, Community Member/Organization
  • Pat Dockrey, Community Member/Organization
  • Nutrition Services Team, Team (Denice Kwate, Jeannette Beatty, Farrah Johnson, Holly Berg)
  • SunGard Implementation Leadership Team, Team (Susan Christenson, Jan Hutton, Jacque Johnson, Tim Nootenboom)
Spokane Valley Learning Academy
  • Courtney Johnson, Certificated Employee
Summit School
  • Kamin Sandford, Community Member/Organization
  • Supervisory Team, Team (Gail Dickson, Cheryl Hepkema, Ian Irelan, Glenda Jelinek, Christina Jeromcheck and Tammie Kindley)