October 15, 2011
Gala celebrates Irving Schools’ Successes
By Jess Paniszczyn
The inaugural Legacy Gala benefiting the Irving Schools Foundation was hosted at the Four Seasons Resort and Club on Oct. 7. The evening included a number of presentations about the Irving Independent School District (IISD), as well as dinner, a live auction and live music.
Radio personality on the syndicated radio show, Kidd Kraddick in the Morning, Kellie Rasberry, served as the evening’s emcee.
“I am very excited to be a part of something that means so very much to me as education,” Rasberry said during the event. “When I didn’t have a child, school districts weren’t important where I lived. Now that my daughter is getting into school and the education process, I am finding that I really pay attention. “I began to realize how much my teachers impacted my life. “I began to realize how much my teachers impacted my life. Looking back, the women who encouraged me were my female teachers. They told me not to sit in the back of the room and pretend to be an airhead. They said I should speak my mind, show my intelligence and be proud to express my opinion. Those women are the reason I get to do what I do in my life today.”
Former Irving ISD student and Orthopedic Surgeon, Douglas Won, MD helped sponsor the Gala.
“The leaders and teachers in the Irving school district gave me a solid foundation,” Won said. “So once I graduated, I could go out and compete in the universities with any students from any other part of the country. “I’m so glad I had an opportunity to come back to Irving and start my career as a spine surgeon. “I’m so glad I had an opportunity to come back to Irving and start my career as a spine surgeon. I have to thank all the teachers, principals and counselors who were involved in my life.”
One of the Gala’s highlights was the introduction of Judith Nevil, a GT/AP teacher at Irving High School who is IISD’s Secondary teacher of the year, and Deborah Dupree a science teacher at Johnson Middle School who is IISD’s Elementary Teacher of the Year.
“As a teacher, I am reminded daily of my awesome responsibility and my golden opportunity teachers have to make a difference in young peoples’ lives,” Nevil said. “Teaching is a profession like no other, because we make a difference. We are the ones who make the professionals of tomorrow. We educate young people who will be tomorrow’s lawyers, doctors, nurses, mathematicians, scientists, and the list goes on and on. “Great teachers set high expectations for themselves, not just for their students. “Great teachers set high expectations for themselves, not just for their students. Great teachers are guided by expectations, not by rules. Great teachers can teach anywhere and to any number. Great teachers treat students with respect every single day. They praise students after they criticize them. “In the Irving ISD, I am privileged to work with many of these great teachers who have mentored and guided me over the years. I am also privileged to work in a district that supports and encourages teachers, giving them the tools with which to teach and providing them with opportunities to hone their skills, thus making it possible for all teachers to become master teachers.”