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Then And Now: For The Love of Education

January is School Board Recognition Month, and we wanted to honor our amazing board members who give so much to the Jeffco community. 

To allow our community to get to know their members more, we asked each member two questions: 

  • Why do you love Jeffco and Jeffco Public Schools?
  • What was your favorite subject, teacher or activity from when you were in school?

 

In addition to these questions, our board members graciously shared two of their favorite photos: one from their youth and another from the present day. 

Thank you again to our board members who work tirelessly for Jeffco students! 

Susan Harmon

President

I love the teachers, para educators, special education teachers, and all support staff and building leaders in Jeffco.  They care deeply about each student and work tirelessly to ensure all students have success on their own terms, both inside and outside of school.  I believe that the impact of teachers on my life as a student is the same for those in Jeffco and I am so thankful for their hard work, dedication and unending belief in all students.  That is what I love most about Jeffco schools.  I am privileged to live in this community, have our children attend Jeffco schools, and to serve on the School Board.

In looking through my photo albums and school memorabilia to find a picture to send in, I was struck by how I still remember the names of each one of my elementary school teachers, custodian, and principal.  They all had such an impact on me and my future educational experiences.  I have the same strong memories from middle school and high school, in particular, the impact of my middle school physical education teacher and high school teacher and coaches.  My experiences outside of school as I progressed in my education were equally as significant. I loved playing high school soccer and participating in cheerleading, drill team, and student government.  In addition to having a supportive family, my friends were everything to me.

THEN

NOW

Susan Harmon kid
Susan Harmon with dog

Susan Miller

Treasurer

Jeffco Public Schools provided flexible pathways for all four of my children and for that I am thankful. And I love Jeffco schools, because I’ve seen that, at their best, they have shown the world that diversity can produce excellence.

My favorite teacher was Mr. Robert Brosnahan, who taught honors Language Arts my senior year in high school.  He brought poetry to life, introduced me to English authors, and encouraged my passion for writing. My favorite activities were participating in student government, musicals, choir, and the 48 member precision dance line for marching band.

THEN

NOW

Susan Miller teen
Susan Miller skiing

Ron Mitchell

2nd Vice President

I have loved to go to work every day in all of my roles in Jeffco Public Schools over the last fifty years. I have been blessed to meet and work with exciting people who are committed to making a positive difference in our community. I personally believe public education is a foundational cornerstone of our American Democracy and we work every day to prepare tomorrow’s successful citizens and leaders. It has been extremely rewarding to play a role in this exciting work in a great school district.

In third grade, I was blessed to have a teacher who decided to help me learn to enjoy reading. She would go to the library and get a book for me to read each week. On Monday mornings she asked me to come to school ten minutes early and she would ask a few questions about the book and give me another book to read. When she figured out that I enjoyed reading about the American Frontier, she brought me every book she could find about Davy Crocket and Daniel Boone. I will never forget her or that year in my schooling. She was a highly effective teacher for me and she made a difference in my life.  

THEN

NOW

 Ron Mitchell, pitcher, Arvada High School  Ron Mitchell with family

Brad Rupert

1st Vice President

I love Jeffco Schools for the dedicated teachers and the education they provided my sons. My favorite subject in high school was Ceramics class taught by Mr. Beasley.  It was a wonderful creative outlet and stress relief.

NOW

Brad Rupert in pumpkin patch

Stephanie Schooley

Secretary

Jeffco is a beautiful and dynamic place to live, work, and play. Jeffco bridges the very best of access to arts, commerce, and culture with access to nature, outdoor adventures, and solitude (unless you're on I-70). Both of my children attend Jeffco Public Schools, as did my husband. We've developed lasting friendships and a strong community through our involvement in Jeffco and have appreciated how our kids are learning through Jeffco schools. I'm proud to represent my community as part of the board of education.

My favorite subject in high school was art, my favorite activity was orchestra, and my favorite teacher was Ms. Cohlmia. Ms. Cohlmia taught chemistry (which was not my favorite subject), but much more than that, she challenged her students to think critically about how what we were learning connected with our lives and with the world around us. She pushed us to think through our opinions and thoughts, not solely to memorize and recite information. She has had a lasting impact on the way that I think about learning and the possibilities of K-12 education.

THEN

NOW

Stephanie Schooley school days Stephanie Schooley with family
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