Team SISD’s volunteers and parent volunteer groups contributed thousands of service hours to the 47 schools and many departments in the school district this school year.
These unsung heroes were honored for their dedication and service at the annual Volunteer Recognition and Awards Luncheon at ESC Region 19 Head Start Multi-Purpose Center.
“Every volunteer is instrumental to our success!” said SISD Superintendent Dr. José Espinoza. “We couldn’t be the best school district in town without your help. Thank you for your relentless dedication and assistance.”
The district has 9,253 registered volunteers who put in 122,351 service hours during the 2016-2017 school year. They help in whatever way they can from coordinating fundraisers to giving enrichment lessons to elementary school students. They work alongside faculty and staff to enhance and enrich educational opportunities provided to our children.
“The thousands of hours they contribute to our schools, sports, fine arts and other programs has had a tremendous impact on our students’ academics and social well-being,” said Rachel Tarango, SISD’s volunteer program coordinator. “They are dedicated and happy to be our extra pairs of hands for the district.”
About 500 people attended the recognition luncheon, in which one person from every school was recognized as Campus Volunteer of the Year. In addition, Team SISD honored its top five parent organizations and the Youth Volunteer of the Year. Two new awards also were announced: the Military Volunteer of the Year and the Healthier Team SISD award. Finally, the Elementary Volunteer of the Year and the Secondary Volunteer of the Year were announced.
Valerie Huh, who was named Secondary Volunteer of the Year, said volunteering to her means trying to support SISD in as many things as possible.
“It’s been wonderful to be at Puentes (Middle School),” Huh said. “This is the best middle school in SISD. There is such a positive atmosphere. You just want to jump in and be a part of what is going on. This is just the best place for children.”
The Elementary Volunteer of the Year, Janelle Gonzalez, has been a volunteer at H.D. Hilley Elementary since she graduated from high school in 2012. She has always helped at the school because her mom is a teacher there.
“This is not work for me,” said Gonzalez, who plans to be a teacher. “I love kids. I love helping them. I love the classroom. It’s just a part of me. It’s something that is familiar. I can’t imagine doing anything else.”
Team SISD’s volunteer program is among the top in the state. For the past two years, two SISD volunteers were recognized with the Heroes for Children Award, a statewide recognition that honors individuals making the difference for students and schools. Joe Ramirez from Eastlake High School and Yamile Gonzales at Ernesto Serna School were honored in 2015 and 2016, respectively.
2017 SISD Volunteer Award winners
Parent Organization winners
•Americas High School Orchestra Boosters
•Eagle Eyes from Col. John O. Ensor Middle School
•John Drugan Super School Volunteer Program
•Montwood Ram Band and A-Team Boosters, Inc.
•Heroes Volunteer with Heart from Purple Heart Elementary School
Youth Volunteer of the Year
•Abigail Hernandez from Montwood High School
Military Volunteer of the Year
•Soni Fairley from SSG. Manuel R. Puentes Middle School
Healthier Team SISD
•Helen Ball Elementary for its Wellness Wednesday Program
Elementary Volunteer of the Year
Secondary Volunteer of the Year
Campus Volunteers of the Year:
•Americas High School — Verenice Valerio
•Benito Martinez Elementary — Dawn Sisneros-Herrera
•Bill Sybert School — Debbie Portillo
•Campestre Elementary — Yolanda Villalobos
•Capt. Walter E. Clarke Middle School — Patricia Martin Del Campo
•Chester E. Jordan Elementary — Rosie Alarcon
•Col. John O. Ensor Middle School — Linda Miner
•Desert Wind School — Ivette Navarro
•Dr. Sue Shook Elementary — Winifred Dee
•Eastlake High School — Sergio Ulloa
•El Dorado High School — Ana Martinez
•Elfida P. Chavez Elementary — Diana Bertesina-Rojas
•Ernesto Serna School — Brenda Hernandez
•Escontrias Elementary — Daisy Garcia
•H.D. Hilley — Janelle Gonzalez
•Helen Ball Elementary — Ariadne Herrera
•Horizon Heights Elementary — Haydee Hernandez
•Hueco Elementary — Ofelia Murrillo
•Hurshel Antwine Elementary — Nancy Villalobos
•James P. Butler Elementary — Isabelle Pyatt
•Jane A. Hambric School — Amparo Resendiz
•John Drugan School — Francisco Torres
•Keys Academy — Maria Garcia
•Loma Verde Elementary — Jessica Loya
•Lujan-Chavez — Rene Velez
•Mission Early College High School — Marcela Martinez
•Mission Ridge Elementary — Silvia Mendiola
•Montwood High School — Mario Albert Candia
•Myrtle Cooper Elementary — Jack Tranter
•O’Shea Keleher Elementary — Sandra Lopez
•Paso Del Norte School — Elsa Molinar
•Pebble Hills High School — Catalina Espinosa
•Purple Heart Elementary — Ruben Bautista
•Robert R. Rojas Elementary — Brenda Alcantar
•Salvador H. Sanchez Middle — Yesenia Mercado
•Sgt. Roberto Ituarte Elementary — Carlos Calderon
•Sierra Vista Elementary — Lucia Andozola
•Socorro High School — Valarie Ortega
•Socorro Middle School — Julia Mendoza
•Spc. Rafael Hernando III Middle School — Tammy Bennett
•SSG. Manuel R. Puentes Middle School — Valerie Huh
•Sun Ridge Middle School — Javier Cruz
•Vista Del Sol Elementary — Graciela Ibarra
•VASSP — Angelica Apodaca
•William D. Slider Middle School — Mabel Evans
To view gallery of awards luncheon, click HERE.