By Sarah Shively, Catholic Community Foundation of Northeast Indiana
The Catholic Community Foundation announced the first annual Catholic Teacher Award in the fall of 2021. With an endowment left by the late Mrs. Catherine Schmenk – a great proponent of Catholic education – the award recognized four outstanding primary grade teachers in the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend.
Criteria for nomination were based on who best demonstrated the ability to motivate and inspire intellectual and spiritual development, leadership, responsibility, enthusiasm, curiosity and creativity, while also being a role model in their professional, civic, parish and personal life. Eleven nominations were received from school principals. All nominees were very deserving, but the committee has selected four winners.
The winners are: Carol Sarasien, St. Joseph – Hessen Cassel School; Nicola Matty, St. Vincent de Paul School; Kate Helm, Christ the King School; and Sarah Leblang, St. Anthony de Padua School.
Each of these winners received $1,000 dollars and another $1,000 went to their schools’ endowment fund. The foundation looks forward to honoring deserving teachers in the future.
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