Local Educators Recognized for Excellent Work in DeKalb County


The DeKalb County Community Foundation and DeKalb County Regional Office of Education recognized five educators from Genoa-Kingston, Hiawatha, and DeKalb school districts during the annual Excellence in Education Awards reception at Kishwaukee College. Recipients were chosen by an independent selection committee out of nineteen nominees from six school districts in DeKalb County.

Established in 1999 by retired Sycamore elementary school teacher Yvonne Johnson, the Excellence in Education Awards recognize teachers, administrators, and support staff who have inspired a love of learning in students and play an active role in their schools and communities in DeKalb County. Support for the awards celebration comes through an endowed fund created by Yvonne at the DeKalb County Community Foundation. Winners receive a check for $1,000, an engraved clock, and personalized medallion.

Recipients of the 2018 Excellence in Education Awards in each of the five categories are:

· Support Staff: Jennifer Butler, Genoa-Kingston High School, Principal’s Secretary

· PreK – 5th Grade Teacher: Staci Hale, Kingston Elementary School, P.E. Teacher

· 6th – 8th Grade Teacher: Jenna Araujo, Hiawatha PreK-8 School, Art Teacher

· 9th – 12th Grade Teacher: Steven Lundin, DeKalb High School, Band Director & Fine Arts Coordinator

· Administration: Stefanie Hill, Kingston Elementary School, Principal

“So many educators have a lasting impact on their students,” DeKalb County Regional Superintendent Amanda Christensen remarked at the closing of the awards reception. “It could be instigating a love of a content area, inspiring students to become educators themselves, or just providing a safe and comfortable environment. It is important that we honor the people who have had a deep impact on us, and it is important that we remember that we continue to influence young lives – my challenge is to be a positive influence.”

Learn more about the Excellence in Education Awards at www.dekalbccf.org/eie. For questions, please contact Community Foundation Grants Manager Becky Zantout at becky@dekalbccf.org or 815-748-5383.