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Chamber honors teachers
Chamber Teachers pic
Kilough Elementary School teacher Teresa Conowal speaks March 11 during the annual teacher of the year appreciation luncheon. - photo by Frank Reddy Dawson Community News

Business leaders and public officials honored Dawson County’s teachers of the year during a luncheon March 11, where school administrators got to brag on some of the district’s best educators.


The annual Dawson County Chamber of Commerce event recognizes those who excelled in their jobs during the past year of teaching.


A district-wide 2009-10 teacher of the year was also honored at the event. Kilough Elementary teacher Teresa Conowal was given that honor.


Principal Lois Zangara introduced Conowal. “If I had one word to describe Mrs. Conowal, that word would be ‘phenomenal,’” Zangara said. “We love her, because she is the best of the best.”


Conowal spoke of her love for the job.


“Each day, I am given the privilege of working with children,” Conowal said.

“By year’s end, when students move on to continue their journey in learning, the lessons they have taught me will be with me for a lifetime,” she said.


Black’s Mill Elementary teacher Lisa Robin was introduced by Principal Julia Mashburn.


Said Mashburn: “It doesn’t take long to see the dedication Mrs. Robin has for her students. It’s a blessing to work with her, and Black’s Mill is a better school because of her.”


Robin thanked the group for the honor. “I love teaching, and I love working with kids,” Robin said. “Thank you so much for having me here today.”


Robinson Elementary’s teacher of the year, Vicki Carlisle, said working in Dawson County has been “a pleasure.”


Vice Principal Kim Bennett said Carlisle is “an outstanding teacher. We have given her very challenging situations, and she takes all of those in stride.”


Dawson County Middle School Principal Mark Merges spoke highly of Paula Cox, the school’s teacher of the year.


“She’s a very dependable person,” Merges said. “When you go into her classroom, you see a very engaging educator.”


Cox said she was “grateful” and thanked the community “for supporting educators.”


Riverview Middle School’s teacher of the year, Pat Harris, said the honor goes to her students. “They’re the reason I’m standing here today,”


Principal Bill Zadernak said her students are “some of the best and brightest kids in the school, and she has a big impact on them.”


Neil Harrison, interim principal at Dawson County High School, introduced Chris Gore.


Said Harrison: “[Gore] talks to students like they’re his colleagues, and he’s able to get messages across to them in an effective manner.”


Gore thanked his students. “I’m only as good as my students. If they weren’t good, I wouldn’t be good,” Gore said. “It’s a two-way street.”