Outstanding Support Staff of the Year

Nominees

Outstanding Support Staff Nominees

Linda Alfonso, Secretary, Communications Department/Central Office

Bona Bita, Custodian, Smith Middle School

Pam Byrd, Secretary, Hamilton Elementary School

Dean Cameron, Bus Driver, First Student

Christine Clifford, Secretary, Bemis Elementary School

Val Doozan, Building Tech, Wattles Elementary School

Karen Guilbert, Paraprofessional, Costello Elementary School

Maxine Japowicz, Paraprofessional, Martell Elementary

Joaquina (Kina) Kapuscinski, Paraprofessional, Bemis Elementary School

Sharon Kreza, Secretary, Wattles Elementary School

Fran Mahoney, Health Care Aide, Larson Middle School

Jill Martens, Paraprofessional, Troy High School

Barb McCoy, Paraprofessional, Hamilton Elementary School

Cathy Mishark, Noon Aide/Crossing Guard, Hamilton Elementary School

Nancy Mosey, Paraprofessional, Barnard Elementary

Cindy Mounteer, Paraprofessional, Hill Elementary School

Ashmi Parekh, Paraprofessional, Larson Middle School

Nancy Richter, Paraprofessional, Athens High School

Lynn Sharp, Building Tech/Webmaster, ELL Tutor/Immigrant Services, Hamilton Elem.

Melodie Stevens, CARE Assistant, Barnard Elementary

Tara Stonecipher, Paraprofessional, Leonard Elementary School

Meena Trivedi, Paraprofessional, Hamilton Elementary School

Lori Uchwal, Secretary/Payroll & Accounting, Troy College & Career HS/Enrichment

Melissa Verduyn, Systems Analyst, Technology/Services Building

Melissa Vukov, Paraprofessional, Bemis Elementary

Support Staff Employee of the Year

Lori Uchwal Profile

Call her a jack-of-all trades or a school building superhero, but one thing is clear—LORI UCHWAL, the 2018-19 TSD Outstanding Support Staff Employee of the Year, is making a difference in the lives of countless students, staff, parents and community members.
 
Ms. Uchwal was chosen because of the tremendous impact she has on everyone she meets through her dual roles as Secretary at Troy College and Career High School and as Payroll/Accounting Secretary for Community Education/Enrichment. That may seem like a lot for any one person, but Ms. Uchwal also serves as the Coach for the Troy Syncronized Swim Team.
 
What’s more, Ms. Uchwal does it all with what colleagues say is an amazingly upbeat, positive demeanor and calming presence. TCCHS Principal Deb MacDonald-Linford says her influence on students makes all the difference. “She is the big sister when they need someone to listen. Lori is the cheerleader when they need that extra encouragement. She can also be the stern mom when they need to be corrected and always remembers to order their lunch even when they forget.”
 
Teacher Jonathan Matthews agrees, saying, “Students can and do approach her to get help, find information, or simply talk about their days. Lori's approachable and positive disposition allow others to connect with her and feel at ease. With the focus on the red pillar in Troy, especially at a school with a high population of at-risk youth, she is precisely the caring face we need.”
Ms. Uchwal’s dedication to her student athletes on the Synchronized Swim Team also knows no bounds. From choreographing all their routines to making all of their costumes by hand, it’s easy to see why team members consider her a second mom. 

As her colleagues explain, she brightens the lives of everyone she meets:

“Congratulations to all--you are truly WORLD CLASS!