Aside from supporting teachers and students throughout the district, what do sixteen Dare County Schools employees whose roles include Transportation Information Manager, Technology Coordinator, After-School Enrichment Coordinator, Child Nutrition Assistant, and Student Information Data Manager, and school Maintenance have in common? Each have been acknowledged at their worksites as dependable and dedicated, producing outstanding work, and making unique contributions to Dare County Schools. These high performing individuals, named as 2012 Employees of the Year, were celebrated on Thursday, February 23 at a dinner in their honor at Pamlico Jack's. The district Employee of the Year, Benefits Coordinator Judy Coltrain, was announced by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Sue F. Burgess. Each of the eleven schools, and five departments/programs - After-School Enrichment, Child Nutrition, Transportation, Maintenance and Central Office select an Employee of the Year. The district winner is chosen by representatives to the Superintendent's Employee Advisory Committee, which met this year on February 17.
Joining Coltrain as 2012 Employees of the Year are First Flight High School Data Manager Brenda Askew, Manteo High School Guidance Office Admin Assistant Mandy Bartell, Nags Head Elementary School Teacher Assistant Kata Daniel, Kitty Hawk Elementary School Data Manager Debora Davenport, Dare County Alternative School Technology Coordinator DuWayne Gibbs, Cape Hatteras Secondary School of Coastal Studies Teacher Assistant Natasha Farrow, Child Nutrition Admin Assistant Kelleta Govan, After-School Enrichment Coordinator (KHES) Stephanie Hughes, Cape Hatteras Elementary School Pre-K Assistant Karen Huizing, First Flight Middle School Custodian Firqiret Hysa, First Flight Elementary School Teacher Assistant Candy Norrell, Manteo Elementary School Finance Officer Judy Oesting, Transportation Information Manager Wendy Schwartz, Manteo Middle School Media Assistant Gracie Storey, and Maintenance Department (Cape Hatteras Schools) Bo Wallis.
The honorees and their guests were welcomed by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Sue F. Burgess; Board Chairman Ben Sproul congratulated the winners as the "best of the best" and extended appreciation to each for the quality of work "that you do everyday in our schools." Assistant Superintendent John M. Winston, Jr. acknowledged Ace Hardware stores of Avon, Kitty Hawk, Nags Head, and Manteo and thanked Ace V.P. of Finance and Human Resources, Bill McLaughlin, and Head of Operations, Kathy Seko, for sponsoring the dinner. Pierce Group Benefits supports the employee of the year recognition with a contribution for gifts. Winston acknowledged Director of Personnel Trip Hobbs for coordinating the program and making arrangements for the dinner. In addition to Chairman Sproul, Board members attending the event were Margaret Lawler, David Oaksmith, and Bea Basnight. Preceding Burgess' announcement that Coltrain is the 2012 overall winner, the principals, directors and supervisors gave brief remarks about each of their staff members, frequently quoting praises from their colleagues and students.