May 31, 2017
United Way of Central Indiana announced tonight the four individuals from Indianapolis Public Schools who were named as Hubbard Life-Changing Educators. Each winner received a $25,000 prize.
The three winning teachers of the Hubbard Award were: Maggie Brown, SITE Program at IUPUI; Julie Herdman, SUPER School 19; and Sheila Long, Elder W. Diggs School 42. The one winning principal was Shane O’Day, Shortridge High School.
Each winner was surprised with a check, a video tribute highlighting the impact he or she has on their students and schools, and a red glass-etched apple commemorating the event.
“These four educators teach and inspire their students to be the best they can be every day,” said Al Hubbard, who serves as Chairman of E&A Companies, an Indianapolis-based business. “Kathy and I are proud to recognize and reward these teachers and principals for their extraordinary work in education and for going beyond the call of duty to turn kids’ lives around. They join the ranks of previous Hubbard Award winners and serve as an inspiration to their students as well as to the profession.”
“At United Way, we believe every child deserves access to a high-quality education and the chance to learn from the finest educators,” said Ann D. Murtlow, United Way’s president and CEO. “We know success starts early, and then it takes exceptional teachers and principals who elevate and inspire their students. We are grateful to the Al and Kathy for this wonderful opportunity to make our life-changing educators feel appreciated.”
Now in its fourth year, the Hubbard Life- Changing Educator Award is managed by United Way of Central Indiana and funded by longtime education champions Al and Kathy Hubbard representing The Hubbard Family Foundation.
“A true Hubbard Award winner is someone who can make everyone around them a better student, a better teacher and a better person. This teacher has that effect on everyone who knows her,” said a friend and colleague in Maggie’s nomination.
Maggie Brown always goes above and beyond what you may consider the duties of a “normal teacher.” For example, Maggie Brown helped one of her students gain access to an electronic wheelchair through Medicaid when the student’s manual wheelchair fell into disrepair. She then continued to support this student who was eventually able to live independently with a roommate and work independently at the Y.M.C.A. When another student was hit by a car, Maggie stayed at the hospital until to make her student feel safe and supported.
Maggie is never willing to give up on opportunities and chances at success for her students. She promotes positivity, growth, confidence and a sense of community among her students. She is more than a teacher. According to a colleague, “she is an advocate, educator and protector for the lives she molds.
Julie Herdman’s work extends far beyond the typical school day. As a physical education teacher, her emphasis is on a healthy lifestyle and physical activity while incorporating learning opportunities that support what is taught in the classroom. She arrives at school to lead fitness classes, and she leaves the building late after coaching and tutoring students.
One of her students commented on how Julie is a role model: “When I think I want to give up, she tells me, ‘don’t stop. Push, push through it’. I need to lose lots more weight and I’m not going to give up. I want to make her proud of me.” Another student, who excelled in basketball, will be joining the coaching staff at Arsenal Tech High School next year. Julie coached her, found a way for her to play college basketball and inspired her to be a role model to other young athletes.
For the students whose lives have been touched by Julie Herdman, there is never any doubt that she cares about them as individuals.
“I am humbled to imagine the impact made on the lives of the students and families she has had in her career of over two decades as a special educator,” says a grateful colleague of Sheila Long.
Sheila is dedicated teacher whose service to students and their families goes well beyond her classroom. Over the last 10 years, she has consistently provided services to a student who was severely and tragically injured while walking home from school at age seven. After each school day, she travels to his home to read and provide lessons to him, and she lends support to his entire family.
“Addressing the needs of everyone around her with grace and devotion,” was the comment in Sheila’s many nominations for the Hubbard Life-Changing Educator award.
As a staff member and parent shared, “Life Changing” are the perfect words to describe Shane O’Day. “His expertise goes beyond the school’s program and general education practices.”
Shane O’Day is an advocate for the dreams and goals of his students and relentless in his pursuit of providing the best opportunities for everyone in his school. Shane was hired to help develop and lead a new school with a rigorous curriculum. According to a community partner, “Shane handled a challenging transition of programs and schools with diplomacy, transparency and an ethic of care at every stage.”
Since day one, Shane has instituted a practice of greeting each student by name and a handshake as they enter the school. His immediate and steadfast dedication to setting the expectations of respect and effort at the forefront of the school culture sets a tone of “students first”.
Contacts for United Way of Central Indiana:
Ty Spisak, Marketing and Public Relations Manager
Jessica Di Santo, Director of Communications
Carrie Cline Black