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2010 Fine Art Award Winners: Pam Iverson, Kathy Litherland, Andrew Patton and Debbie Seelhoefer

The "go getters" who earned the first Fine Arts recognition awards in IESA history -- the Distinguished Service Award and the Class Act Award -- are a group of teacher-coaches who have set the bar high. Awards are presented in the activities of Speech and Music.

Given for the first time during the 2009-10 school year, the criteria for the two awards is similar. The recipients must be actively involved in IESA Speech or Music. The recipients must demonstrate the ability to develop and promote standards of good performance practices, integrity and life skills within their students. The contributions of the award winners must have positively impacted students and the school community.

For the Distinguished Service Award winner, the contributions must be significant and/or long term for someone involved with Speech or Music for over eight years of teaching and coaching. For the Class Act Award winner, the contributions are from someone involved with Speech or Music for at least 3 and not more than 8 years of teaching and coaching.

Kathy Litherland, who taught language arts at Lincoln Junior High School for 34 plus years, and who coached the speech team for 32 years, is the 2010 Distinguished Service Award winner. A former member of the IESA Speech Advisory Committee, she has been a mainstay presenter at the annual fall Speech Workshops. Kathy trained speech judges and judged herself for many years. She has mentored new coaches throughout her career. Retired from the Lincoln school system, she volunteers at Lincoln Carroll Catholic School.

Pam Iverson, a language arts teacher at Mahomet-Seymour Junior High School for the past six years, and a speech coach the past five years, is the 2010 Class Act Award winner. Currently head speech coach at Mahomet-Seymour, she began her career as a language arts teacher in the Champaign system. Pam was an assistant coach and the substitute head speech coach at Mahomet-Seymour before taking over. A strong promoter of the speech team and how it represents the school, she models what she coaches in the classroom. She makes a strong connection with the students and that creates interest in the speech program.

Debbie Seelhoefer, who has taught choral in Mt. Zion for 19 plus years is the 2010 Distinguished Service Award Winner for Music. Currently the music director at Mt. Zion Intermediate School, Debbie has hosted numerous IESA Solo & Ensemble Contests throughout her years. These contests are extremely well organized and provide hundreds of students with an outstanding musical competition experience. Debbie is a strong promoter of music education and the life long contributions it makes to a students life. Daily she treats her students to a creative, enriched, and interactive music lesson that she derives from her passion of music.

Andrew Patton, a band director in Winchester Elementary School for five years is the 2010 Class Act Award winner for Music. According to Thad Walker, Principal at Winchester Elementary School, Andrew has been working tirelessly to restore the music program in Winchester. He is a positive male role model in the school and is very encouraging for new band students. Andrew enjoys his job and his enthusiasm is very contagious to his students and co-workers.

Congratulations to all the Speech and Music recipients.



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