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2011 Teacher of the Year and Excellence in Education Awards. “Luis always goes above and beyond... No job is too big or too small for Luis.” ~ Nomination excerpt. “Luis stays involved with the students by coaching the soccer team. All the players respect him very much.” ~ Nomination excerpt.

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luis martinez head custodian terrace middle school lakeport unified school district

“Luis always goes above and beyond... No job is too big or too small for Luis.”

~ Nomination excerpt

“Luis stays involved with the students by coaching the soccer team. All the players respect him very much.”

~ Nomination excerpt

“Luis does everything with pride and always a smile and a ‘hello’ for all he encounters.”

~ Nomination excerpt

Luis Martinez

Head Custodian

Terrace Middle School, Lakeport Unified School District

teri langford middle school high school attendance clerk middletown unified school district

“Teri brings a smile and a great attitude to work every day.”

~ Nomination Form Excerpt

“She never gets her feathers ruffled, and always goes the extra mile for students, parents and the people she works with.”

~ Nomination Form Excerpt

“Teri continually advocates for, and expresses genuine concern for all our students.”

~ Nomination Form Excerpt

Teri Langford

Middle School/High School Attendance Clerk

Middletown Unified School District

bernardo santana garcia custodian and groundskeeper konocti unified school district
Bernardo Santana Garcia

Custodian and Groundskeeper,

Konocti Unified School District

maryann mathews special education secretary aide activity director upper lake high school district

“Mary Ann is a wonderful role model, not only for students but for staff as well. She never says no to someone in need, and is always ready to lend a helping hand.”

~ Colleague

“Mary Ann is one of those rare individuals who always sees the good in people. She is an exceptional aide with the ability to be compassionate.” ~ Colleague

Maryann Mathews

Special Education Secretary/Aide/Activity DirectorUpper Lake High School District

wesley buddy thomas maintenance technician upper lake high school district

“Buddy is a member of a great team of maintenance workers at ULHS. If you need something done see Buddy.”

~ Colleague

“Mr. Thomas is a dedicated hard working employee.

He can fix anything and it is done to perfection.”

~ Colleague

Wesley “Buddy” Thomas

Maintenance Technician

Upper Lake High School District

anna sabalone upper lake high school academic decathlon coach

“Anna is a high energy educator who is committed to her students’ success.


Anna Sabalone

Upper Lake High School

Academic Decathlon Coach

clear lake high school 2011 california distinguished school

“Clear Lake High School is very deserving of this recognition. This is difficult to achieve, and is the result of a focus on student achievement.” ~Tim Gill, Senior Director of Educational Services, LCOE

Clear Lake High School

2011 California Distinguished School

John Berry

Mountain Vista Middle School

Lake County Middle School Principal of the Year

Association of California School Administrators

Steve Gentry

Clear Lake High School

Lake County High School Principal of the Year

Association of California School Administrators

Erin Smith-Hagberg

Lakeport Unified School District

Lake County Superintendent of the Year

Association of California School Administrators

April Leiferman

Lake County Elementary School Principal of the Year

Association of California School Administrators

Greg Mucks

Lake County Special Education Administrator of the Year

Association of California School Administrators

elsie mackesy first grade teacher coyote valley elementary

“Elsie has a passion for her profession and it shows. She puts great time and energy into assisting children to discover and learn.”

~Nomination Excerpt

Elsie Mackesy

First Grade Teacher,

Coyote Valley Elementary


“Elsie brings her love of the natural world to the school for her students and peers to learn about firsthand, via her love of gardening and nature.”

~ Colleague

congratulations mrs mackesy

“You are the best teacher, Mrs. Mackesy. We love you.”

~ 1st Grade Student

Congratulations, Mrs. Mackesy!

karen bettencourt second grade teacher lakeport elementary

“Karen will do whatever it takes to ensure the success of all her students. She truly takes an interest in each individual student.”

~Cindy Brownell, Colleague

Karen Bettencourt

Second Grade Teacher,

Lakeport Elementary


“Special needs students are always welcome in Karen’s classroom with love and respect. Karen once told me she considers them jigsaw puzzles with no picture on the front to follow. She gently figures out these puzzles as the year progresses by researching their disabilities and tailoring curriculum to the child’s needs, once again, always with love and respect.”

~ Cathy Sylar, Colleague

“Mrs. Bettencourt is sweet. I love the way she taught the class. She always made everything fun. I am just glad I got her for a teacher.

~ Travis Howe, 4th Grade Student

congratulations mrs bettencourt

“Mrs. Bettencourt has always helped everyone. I am now a senior and it meant a lot to me that she kept a piece of my writing over the years. She recently returned it to me. She knows what students need. She continues to be a teacher to me. She offered to help me with one of my classes this year. She undoubtedly deserves to be Teacher of the Year. She is the best and I will always remember her.”

~ Brady Swanson, Former Student

Congratulations, Mrs. Bettencourt!

lisa rogers seventh and eighth grade teacher lower lake elementary

“She is a good teacher, hands on. She doesn’t yell (well, not bad yells). She gets us ready before projects and does a lot of projects. She is my favorite teacher.”

~ Robert, Student

Lisa Rogers

Seventh and Eighth Grade Teacher,

Lower Lake Elementary


“Lisa embodies awesome teaching because she loves, loves, loves her students and helping them gain a thirst for knowledge. She knows science, the state requirements, and what kids need to know as well. When she is stumped, she takes the time to look it up.”

~ Lori, Colleague

congratulations lisa

“She talks to us like people, and she always makes sure we are safe. She gives good directions before a science experiment.”

~ Ashlyn, Student

Congratulations, Lisa!

angel hayenga high school english teacher upper lake high school

“She brings English to life for all of her students.”

~ Pat Iaccino

“Ms. Hayenga is energetic and interesting. She knows exactly how to get the students involved.

~ Student

Angel Hayenga

High School English Teacher,

Upper Lake High School

congratulations angel

“Angel is an enthusiastic and knowledgeable teacher. She has a wonderful ability to connect with students and get them engaged with the learning process.”

~ Mr. Coatney, Colleague

Congratulations, Angel!

danielle villanueva first grade teacher upper lake elementary school

“She’s one of the nicest teachers in this school. I know because I’ve had her my whole entire life.”

~ Previous student

Danielle Villanueva

First Grade Teacher,

Upper Lake Elementary School


“Hard working, knowledgeable and dedicated. Lucky are the students who have Mrs. V. for a teacher. Lucky are those who have her as a friend.”

~ Colleague

“She’s fun to play Bunco with.”

~ Colleague

“She’s a real teacher.”

~ Previous Student, current 2nd grader

“She likes for us to listen to her teach.”

~ Previous Student, current 2nd grader

congratulations danielle

“Put Danielle in with a group of kids and they will be safe, happy and learning every single day.”

~ Nomination excerpt

Congratulations, Danielle!

marilyn grock kelseyville elementary school

Lake County Teacher of the Year

Marilyn Grock

Kelseyville Elementary School


“Without exaggeration, the services and intervention provided by Mrs. Grock and her staff at times changes the entire educational and life trajectory of her students.”

~ Nomination excerpt


“I have worked with Marilyn for the past three years.  Our district has sent many students to her in order to receive their educational services.  Marilyn is ALWAYS excited to work with our kids.  I have no doubt that her excitement is genuine.  Her compassion for kids sets the bar for the rest of us.  Congratulations Marilyn...This is an honor well deserved!”~ Tony Loumea, Upper Lake District SELPA Director

“Parents... Have been impacted by Mrs. Grock in a way that goes beyond the typical parameters of education.”

~Nomination Excerpt


“She’s done so much for him I can’t even tell you. She looked at me one day and said, ‘I see the little boy inside him. I see the little boy in his eyes.’ He’s got so many problems, but she sees the spark of a little boy in him and that’s why he’s grown.”

~ Parent

“It’s just intense what Marilyn has done with this little girl. She has blossomed and it’s all because of Marilyn. She is always on it. She has changed her life forever.”

~ Parent

“She’s just so on top of it and in tune with her kids. She just gets it.”

~ Parent

Former students of Mrs. Grock whose families sent pictures to send their love for her on this special occasion.