School district honors its new retirees
Garfield Re-2 celebrated and honored the careers of 13 employees, with 307 combined years of experience in the district, at the fourth annual Hootenanny and retirement dinner Friday, April 29.This year’s honorees are experts at their jobs and loved by their schools, their community and their students. They will all be missed as the bell rings to open the 2005-06 school year.This year’s retiring class includes: from Kathryn Senor Elementary, principal Bill Zambelli and librarian Sally Antonelli; from Riverside Middle School, teachers Jack Jabbour, Linda Ford and Roselan Carr; from Roy Moore Elementary, teacher Deb Anderson-Nicholson; from Highland Elementary, teacher Shannon Jenkins; from Wamsley Elementary, teachers Keith Lambert, Barb Jansen, Pam Lauman and Judy Green, and from Rifle High School, teacher Marilyn Latham and nutrition services worker Verna Chamberlain.”What an impressive collective resume this group possesses,” said Gary Pack, superintendent of Garfield Re-2. “Their passionate service to the children of Garfield Re-2 has been exemplary. We are sad to see these fine people retire and leave our district, but we wish them well in all of their future endeavors.”About 325 district employees, their spouses, friends and families gathered at the Grand Junction Two Rivers Convention Center for an evening in a simulated Tuscan valley. As usual, the donations of area corporations, and not general fund money, paid for the Hootenanny and retirement dinner.After an Italian dinner, a brief video presentation honoring each of the retirees moved the attendees to laughter and tears. Then the dancing and celebration continued well into the wee hours of the morning.”What a fitting way to end a school year and a career,” said Wamsley Elementary teacher Keith Lambert. “It has been a wonderful, joyous time with friends and colleagues.””Wow, what an exit!” said Riverside teacher Roselan Carr. “It was tremendously entertaining. I am absolutely honored, greatly humbled and truly grateful.”First-year teacher Matt Miller was also impressed by the way that the district honored its retirees.”It’s a great way to honor the people who have served the district for so many years,” he said.Re-2 School Board treasurer Kim Goossens presented the last award of the evening, the Community Volunteer of the Year. This award goes to a community member who has given of him- or herself on both a school- and a districtwide basis.Bev Chambers was the Community Volunteer of the Year for her hours of dedication to the Garfield Re-2 Accountability Committee and her tireless devotion to a new program in the district this year – Kids Voting.”When Garfield Re-2 had the opportunity to participate in the Kids Voting program, we had no idea the number of hours that it would take to coordinate it,” Goossens said. “But (Bev Chambers) took on the challenge with determination and a smile.”Congratulations to all of the retirees and Chambers, and thank you for the dedication to the children of Garfield Re-2.Theresa Hamilton is director of districtwide services for Garfield School District Re-2. She can be reached at 625-7621.
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