Craig Liddell, biology teacher and head soccer coach at Enid High School, was named Enid Public Schools Teacher of the Year during a Wednesday ceremony at Garfield Elementary School.
Sheila Rummery, custodian at Hayes Elementary School, was honored as EPS Support Professional of the Year.
Liddell has been with Enid High School 14 years — his entire career in education. His first two years, Liddell taught health and physical education and coached both boys and girls soccer. For the past 12 years, he also has taught biology.
Liddell was chosen by EHS senior class for the PTSA Red Apple Award in 2011 and 2014. Those same years, he was named Oklahoma high school soccer All-State coach. He was EHS teacher of the year in 2008-2009.
Rummery has been with the school district 39 years, coming to Hayes in 1992. In 1995, she was given the Women of Achievement award from the March of Dimes.
About 350 people crowded into Garfield’s cafeteria for the event.
“As you all know, it takes a village and, besides teachers, it takes a lot of other people to create an environment where kids can learn,” said Darrell Floyd, EPS superintendent, as he addressed the crowd.
Rummery cried when she heard her name called as the winner.
“I just wanted to say ‘thank you,’ and to all my munchkins, ‘I love you,’” Rummery said.
Other district teacher of the year finalists nominees were Denise Blume, fourth-grade teacher at Prairie View Elementary School; Laurie Bushman, special education teacher at Coolidge Elementary School; Stephanie Garis, math teacher at Emerson Middle School; Pam Gilbreath, art teacher at Waller Middle School; Christy Hermanski, pre-kindergarten teacher at Carver Center; Brandi Humphries, fourth-grade teacher at Garfield Elementary School; Sheri Ingham, first-grade teacher at Eisenhower Elementary School; Tammy Kostka, first-grade teacher at Monroe Elementary School; Kristina Love, first-grade teacher at Hoover Elementary School; Becky Meyer, pre-kindergarten teacher at Hayes Elementary School; James Rairden, math teacher at Lincoln Academy; Susan Shewey, library media specialist at Taft Elementary School; Sarah Wardrop, third-grade teacher at Glenwood Elementary School; Serah Watson, fourth-grade teacher at Adams Elementary School; Ashley Weibling, library media specialist at Longfellow Middle School; and Floyd Winfield, physical education teacher at McKinley Elementary School.
The EPS winner, selected by a community committee, will represent the district at the Oklahoma Teacher of the Year competition next fall.
Other support professional of the year finalists were Christi Gammon, cafeteria manager at EHS; and Michelle Zaloudek, secretary at Prairie View. This is the first year for the support award to be given.
Nominations were accepted in three categories. Category one included secretaries, teacher assistants, speech/OT assistants, paraprofessionals, interpreters, tutors/ liaisons, administrative assistants, and technology and audio video.
Category two included bus drivers, custodians, maintenance, bus monitors, mechanics, security officers and crossing guards.
Category three included food technicians, food service drivers, child nutrition hosts and child nutrition managers.
Wednesday’s award presentation was a change from the way things were done in the past, said Jennifer Fields, executive director of Enid Public School Foundation. Formerly the Hall of Fame event, it was held in the spring and focused more on teachers. Retiring teachers also were recognized at the Hall of Fame event.
This year’s event was called an Education Celebration. Support professional and teacher of the year finalists were honored, given prizes and recognized for their achievements. Coffee, tea and desserts were served.
The Education Celebration is the fall fundraiser for EPSF.