Distinguished Educators

Talent Pool Recommendation Form

Emerging Classroom Leaders Pool

Members of the Department of Education's Emerging Classroom Leaders Pool are considered for membership on advisory boards and task forces, and as candidates for special recognition programs. In addition, they represent their communities and our state, and may ultimately receive prestigious recognition.

We are very fortunate to have a rich base of veteran educators represented in our current talent pool. They have been and continue to be a valuable resource in our state efforts. What is particularly lacking at this time is representation from educators relatively new to the profession who demonstrate unusual instructional and leadership ability.

The Department of Education is seeking to add to the Emerging Classroom Leaders Pool, classroom teachers and/or principals who have demonstrated all of the following:
- Exceptional educational talent as evidenced by effective instructional practices and student learning results in the classroom and school;
- Exemplary educational accomplishments beyond the classroom that provide models of excellence for the profession;
- Individuals whose contributions to education are largely unheralded yet worthy of the spotlight;
- Early-to mid-career educators who offer strong long-range potential for professional and policy leadership and;
- Engaging and inspiring presence that motivates and impacts students, colleagues and the community.

To recommend an educator:
1. Complete one Talent Pool Recommendation Form for each candidate with confidential, succinct, and specific information. All questions must be answered. Typewritten submissions are preferred;
2. Write a one-page letter that addresses how the candidate meets the aforementioned criteria; and
3. Obtain a copy of the candidate’s resume.

Recipients of the Presidential Award
for Excellence in Math & Science Teaching

The following are South Dakota educators who have been award recipients.

 Erin Marsh-Pierre Indian Learning Center, Pierre (Discipline: K-6 Mathematics)
 Ann Anderson-Belle Fourche Middle School, Belle Fourche (Discipline: K-6 Science)
 Deborah Snook-Philip High School, Philip (Discipline: 7-12 Mathematics)
 Paul Kuhlman, Avon High School, Avon (Discipline: 7-12 Science)
 Constance Ahrens-Knollwood Heights Elementary, Rapid City (Discipline: K-6 Math)
 Deborah Thorp-Lead-Deadwood Middle School, Lead (Discipline: K-6 Science)
 Lori Keleher-Huron Middle School, Huron, (Discipline: 7-12 Mathematics)
 Angela Hejl-Yankton High School, Yankton, (Discipline: 7-12 Science)
 David Ireland-South Middle School, Rapid City, (Discipline: K-6 Science)
 Rebecca Kitts-St. Joseph Elem. School, Pierre, (Discipline: K-6 Math)
 Allen Hogie-Brandon Valley HS, Brandon, (Discipline: 7-12 Math)
 Julie Olson-Mitchell HS, Mitchell, (Discipline: 7-12 Science)
 Sharla Steever-Hill City Elem., Hill City, (Discipline: K-6 Science)
 Sandra Ullrich-Lincoln Elem., Aberdeen, (Discipline:K-6 Math)
 Mark Farrand- Central HS, Rapid City, (Discipline: 7-12 Science)
 Cassandra Soeffing - Axtell Park MS (Discipline: K-6 Science)
 Dawn Wirth - Hurley Public School, Hurley (Discipline: K-6 Math)
 Donna Peterson – Belle Fourche Middle School (Discipline: Math)
 Sally Stoll - Vermillion Middle School (Discipline: Science)
 Roxie Rae Ahlbrecht – Robert Frost Elem., Sioux Falls (Discipline: Math)
 Sharon Faye Andrews – Mark Twain Elem. (Discipline: Science)
 Michael S. Barondeau – Edmunds Central, Roscoe (Discipline: Science)
 Cynthia Diane Kroon – Montrose HS, Montrose (Discipline: Science)
 Sharon Faye Andrews – Mark Twain Elem. (Discipline: Science)
 Patricia Louise Martin – Roncali, Aberdeen (Discipline: Science)
 Larry D. Beesley – Valley Springs Elem. (Discipline: Science)
 Ramona Ruth Lundberg – Clear Lake (Discipline: Secondary Science)
 Teresa Kay McComber – Little Wound HS, Kyle (Discipline: Math)
 Betty Ann Thomas – Springfield Elementary, Discipline: Math)
 Mary Jo Lee Christensen – Webster (Discipline: Math)
 Ellen Cooch – Spearfish Middle School (Discipline: Math)
 Barbara Ann Dohrer – Mellette Elem., Watertown (Discipline: Science)
 J. Kelly Lane – Douglas Middle School, Box Elder (Discipline: Science)
 Nancy Jean Barondeau – Edmunds Central Elem. (Discipline: Science)
 Eugene R. Bormann – Yankton HS, Yankton (Discipline: Science)
 Rose Marie Kraft – Aberdeen Roncalli Junior High, Aberdeen


ING Unsung Heroes


Kathy Riedy, Department of Education, 605-773-8415