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A Round of Applause for Our February Bravo! Award Winners

Riverview Elementary Kids' Camp Site Coordinator Nicole Michels   Animas Valley Elementary Kindergarten Teacher Heather Gills

The Bravo! Award for the week of February 6th went to Riverview Elementary Kids' Camp Site Coordinator Nicole Michels. She was nominated by a Riverview parent, Marissa Van Alstine.

In her nomination she wrote, "In the last two years Nicole has shown myself and my son kindness and compassion that I thought had been lost in much of todays’ society. My son and I love Nicole as much as we love any member of our own Family. And in turn Nicole has treated us as no less than her own.

While having to adhere to policy and remain an authority figure in her role, Nicole has always proven how much she cares for the children she sees to. She is a fun, loving, kind, respectful and fantastic role model. I have spoken to many parents who agree on what a complete pleasure it is to not only work with her, but over time to feel as though we are friends. It is a wonderful feeling to know that while I am at work my child is in the care of someone who genuinely cares, to know that he is learning, growing, and getting all the love and attention he deserves in these ever so important years of development. Nicole is hands down the most wonderful child care provider I have ever had the pleasure of working with. And I feel that many parents who know her, agree."

Great job, Nicole!

Editor's Note: Nicole and her family are relocating to Washington D.C., her last day with Durango 9-R is this Friday. We thank her for her service to Kids' Camp, Fort Lewis Mesa and the Riverview family.


The Bravo! Award for the week of February 13th went to Animas Valley Elementary Kindergarten Teacher Heather Gills. She was nominated by Administrative Assistant Leslie Van Lindt and Assistant Principal Samantha Tower.

In their nomination they wrote, "Heather is Animas Valley's own ray of sunshine. Everyday, Heather's warm, loving and optimistic attitude help to set the tone and culture that makes Animas Valley the special place that it is.  Lucky for us, during a week of high emotions and challenging situations, Heather was available. Without hesitation, she jumped right in to support her AVE family, responding to students needs, greeting families at the front desk, answering phones and swooping in to support teachers in their classrooms.  She didn't need to be asked to take on any of these roles. Wherever she saw a need, she stepped in to fill it. 

The willingness to put others before oneself is truly what a super hero is made of and Heather is a perfect example. Your Animas Valley family loves and appreciates everything that you are."

Great job, Heather!



Supervisor of Facilities Ron Reed   Florida Mesa Elementary 5th grade teacher Beth Lohr

The Bravo! Award for the week of February 20th went to Supervisor of Facilities Ron Reed. He was nominated by Valerie Bareis, Senior Administrative Assistant in Student Nutrition Services.

In her nomination she wrote, "Ron has assisted our Student Nutrition Services Department in many different ways, often with very short notice. He has juggled custodians in order to ensure our kitchens and cafeterias received adequate service, answered a variety of crazy questions/concerns regarding use of proper cleaning chemicals, assisted us with the proper disposition of surplus equipment, as well as many 'other duties as assigned.'"

On a more personal note, Valerie wrote that Ron was a hero for her following our PD day at Miller Middle School. Valerie's mother had passed away the day before, and while at the training she misplaced her phone that contained numerous messages and information regarding upcoming memorial arrangements. After getting home, she realized the phone was missing and contacted Ron to see if a custodian at Miller might have found the phone. Ron went out of his way to find the phone and then personally drove the phone to Valerie's home in Hermosa.

Way to go, Ron!







The Bravo! Award for the week of February 27th went to Florida Mesa Elementary 5th grade teacher Beth Lohr. She was nominated anonymously.

In their nomination they wrote, "Beth works tirelessly to ensure that all of her students' needs are met. She builds engaging lessons for her students, and allows them to work at their pace. She collaborates with her 5th grade and intervention teams. Beth is starting a SEL group to help empower girls, and help them build their self-esteem and social skills. 


Beth's passion for teaching shows through everything she does. She helps students set goals, reach and exceed those goals. Beth works hard to create a safe, welcoming learning environment in her classroom. She is an amazing teacher and pushes her students to do their best." 

Way to go, Beth!








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