Employee of the Year

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2016 Certificated Educators of the Year


Dedication read by: 
Bonnie Bennett, Director II
of Certificated Personnel

It is my great honor to present the 2016 Manteca Unified School District Awards for Educator of the Year to four outstanding teachers. I will introduce them to you in a moment, but I would like to ask them to come forward and stand with me at this time. Rocio Gonzalez, Elda Rodriguez, Martha Martinez, and Steve Unterholzner. Each of these individuals have been nominated by their peers, an administrator, a parent, a student, or a community member.

Rocio Gonzalez teaches a K/1 combination class at Brock Elliott School, and she was nominated for the Educator of the Year by her principal, Mrs. Debbie Ruger. Rocio has been teaching for 10 years. Rocio is extremely involved at her school and at the District levels, participating on a variety of committees and leading the charge as a technology champion and a math curriculum lead. She supports other professionals by working with new teachers, and training and helping co-workers. She is the true example of a lifelong learner. Congratulations Rocio.

Elda Rodriguez teaches 5th grade at Great Valley Elementary School, and she was nominated by her principal, Mrs. Pat Boutte. Mrs. Boutte says that “Those who know Elda know that she is inspiring! She loves learning, and her enthusiasm is contagious! Elda celebrates her students’ successes with parents, her classroom community, and with administrators. She loves to teach science, in particular, but she is also an excellent trainer for site trainings. In fact, she is doing such a good job with training that she has been named a lead NGSS Rollout Trainer for the San Joaquin County Office of Education. Congratulations, Elda!

Martha Martinez teaches 7th grade language arts, social studies, and elective classes, nominated by her peer Brenda Madsen and her principal. Her principal, Mrs. Sherrie Jåçamero, states that “Mrs. Martinez makes learning an adventure!” One of her peers states that Martha is an “exceptional teacher who puts her heart and soul into her lessons, embracing the technology and infusing excitement into her students.” Martha is in many activities outside of the school as well as in her community. Congratulations, Martha!

Stephan Unterholzner is a science teacher at Sierra High School, and he is nominated by his peer Dr. Larry Grimes and his principal, Mr. Steve Clark. Dr. Grimes states that Steve’s primary motivation is that his students not just be successful, but be innovative and independent learners.” Mr. Clark states that “Steve serves in a variety of site, district, county, and national leadership roles, and he is one of the finest teachers that he has ever known! Congratulations Steve!

Manteca Unified is very lucky to have outstanding educators as leaders and role models in our district. Thank you again for your commitment to our youth!

2016 Classified Employees of the Year


Dedication read by:
Ruth Baker, Director II
of Classified Personnel

It is my pleasure this evening to present our 2016 Classified School Employee of the Year Awards. The selection criteria for nominees includes 5 years of service in the nomination category, excellent work performance, school community involvement, leadership and commitment, and a willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty. It is quite an honor to be selected and we have three outstanding recipients for this award tonight.

Our recipient in the Maintenance, Operations, and Facilities Category is Tony Barros. Tony is the Energy Education Technician in the Community Outreach & Innovative Programs Department and has been with MUSD for 17 years. Tony’s supervisor, Victoria Brunn states “Tony is always willing to go above and beyond. He is the first one to volunteer his services. He makes himself available to schools sites when needed, assists as a chaperone on school field trips, and is a volunteer for the City of Manteca Fire Department.”

Tony won in his category at the county level and will be moving on to the state level to represent Manteca Unified as well as San Joaquin County.

Our recipient in the Office and Technical Category is Katy Jarnagin. Katy is a Clerical Assistant at Sierra High School and has been with MUSD for 10 years. Katy’s supervisor, Greg Leland states “Not only is her job performance outstanding, Katy continuously goes far above and beyond for the students and staff at our school. All of the students on our campus love and adore Katy. She has appeared in school rallies, singing and dancing. She has continuously donated to our school theatre, drafting program, and photography class.

Our recipient in the Para-Educator and Instructional Assistance Category is Angie Geter. Angie is a Paraprofessional at Manteca Day School and has been with MUSD for 18 years. Angie’s supervisor, Gerald Braxton states “She connects with students through empathy, encouragement, and celebration of success. She constantly seeks to learn new procedures, techniques, and educational philosophies, through literature, presentations, trainings and conferences.”

A perpetual plaque is placed in the Personnel Office Lobby and the recipient’s names are listed on the plaque.