HENDERSON, Ky. - A groundbreaking, award-winning high school teacher and a cheerful volunteer who helps with chamber of commerce outreach were honored Thursday night at Kyndle’s Annual Celebration Dinner.
The awards include:
Educator of Year
Emily Johnston was named Henderson County Educator of the Year for the work she has done as a 12th-grade family and consumer sciences teacher for Henderson County High School’s Career and Technical Education program.
Johnston “is an integral part of all the successes of the early childhood education program” , CTE Principal Brian Bailey wrote in nominating her.
“She is a very enthusiastic, hardworking teacher with a great sense of humor who is committed to the ECE program while also taking initiative to persistently promote utmost success both personally and professionally,” Bishop said.
Johnston works with seniors at the Thelma B. Johnson Early Learning Center, where Bishop said she is both “incredibly organized and flexible to best fit the needs of her students.”
Bishop commended her for “being very passionate, forward-minded and goal-oriented” teacher who “empowers her students by always maintaining a positive attitude” and has “great rapport with her colleagues and students.”
Johnston earned majors from both Western Kentucky University (in school counseling) and Eastern Illinois University (family and consumer sciences). She’s a member of numerous state and national professional associations.
She has been a presenter at statewide education conferences four times, and last month was an exhibitor at the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education conference.
Johnston has also won at least nine national, state and local education awards as well as participated with her students in 10 charitable and civic events, from the Salvation Army soup kitchen to the Brain Injury Adventure Camp prom.
She has also partnered with colleagues in other programs in the Henderson County Schools, Riverview School, Henderson Community College, the Kentucky Department of Education and the University of Kentucky Quality Enhancement Initiative.
Johnston says her greatest challenge was taking the Child Development Services II work-based learning camp to the Johnson Learning Center — outside a traditional teaching environment — but called the transition “a magnificent success” that “has strengthened the achievements both within my students and myself.”
“This was a very challenging task, and tireless hours were spent figuring out how students could achieve this award,” said Johnston, who now teaches summer workshops to help other teachers achieve the same success.
Ambassador of Year
Susan Sauls, dubbed the “Queen of Recycling” by presenter Janet Hortin, was honored for her work as a Kyndle ambassador, attending the organization’s ribbon-cuttings and other events.
“Although relatively new to the ambassador program, she has long been actively involved in the Henderson community and she probably knows everyone in the room by name,” Hortin said.
As the education and outreach specialist for Tri-county Recycling, Sauls encourages and educates the community about how and why to recycle materials.
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