District Recognizes Top Volunteers at VIPS Breakfast and Awards Program

Every year, thousands of parents, businesses, and community partners support HISD students and teachers by donating their time, resources, and knowledge. On May 22, 2013, HISD held its annual Volunteers in Public Schools (VIPS) breakfast to celebrate and honor some of the district’s top volunteers.

At this year’s event, titled “Windows of Opportunities for Student Success,” HISD presented its highest recognition, the Jean Davis Myers Award, to longtime HISD volunteer Caronetta Jones. Jones has been a passionate student advocate at HISD for the last 32 years and has dedicated herself to positively impacting the lives of countless students while volunteering at Clifton Middle School, Highland Heights Elementary School, the Ninth-Grade College Preparatory Academy, and the Young Men’s College Preparatory Academy.

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A Special Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Furr High School parent volunteer Tomasita Garza. Garza has brought a renewed sense of family and community to Furr by sharing her traditional Hispanic culinary arts skills and family values during cooking classes organized by the Parent Teacher Student Association.

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Superintendent Terry Grier, along with Board President Anna Eastman also presented awards to nearly 20 other volunteers and community partners during the ceremony, which was held at the Kingdom Builders Center.

PARENT PARTNERS OF THE YEAR

  • Alexandra Gonzalez—Ninfa Laurenzo Early Childhood Center
  • The Wilson Wonderland Committee in coordination with the SPARK Park Program—Wilson Montessori
  • John Grounds—T.H. Rogers
  • Dena Robinson—Bellaire High School

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEERS OF THE YEAR

  • Michal Lutfak—Condit Elementary School
  • Wendy Teoh Chung—T.H. Rogers
  • Hugo Mojica—Sam Houston MSTC

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS OF THE YEAR

  • Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church—Piney Point Elementary School
  • The Galleria Area Rotary Club—Grady Middle School
  • Independent Petroleum Association of America(IPPA)/Petroleum Equipment Suppliers Association (PESA) Education Center—Milby High School

YOUTH VOLUNTEERS OF THE YEAR

  • Southmayd Safety Patrol—Southmayd Elementary School
  • Jamie Russell—Madison High School
  • Grady Recycling Club—Grady Middle School
  • Anna Hiran—Bellaire High School

CHARLES HARDING VIPS SENIORS OF THE YEAR

  • Gery Chapin—Sinclair Elementary School
  • Dalton DeHart—Grady Middle School
  • Durwin Sharp—Bellaire High School

SCHOOL VOLUNTEER COORDINATORS OF THE YEAR

  • Norma Long—Gallegos Elementary
  • Andy Chan—Pin Oak Middle School
  • Anita Darby—Sam Houston Math, Science and Technology Center

The Volunteers in Public Schools Program started in 1970 and HISD currently has more than 30,000 volunteers districtwide who have dedicated countless hours to schools, programs and events across Houston. Members of HISD’s VIPS program serve as tutors, mentors, teacher partners, speakers, security patrols, chaperones, interpreters, and cafeteria monitors, and help in libraries, media centers, clinics, and offices. For more information about how you can become a volunteer, contact Tina Thompson at 713-556-7200 or visit the Volunteers in Public Schools web page.