The Newcomerstown Teachers Association Friend of Education Award was established to recognize a person or organization in our community whose leadership, action, and support have contributed to the improvement of public education and our schools. On behalf of the Newcomerstown teachers Association, it is my honor to announce this year's recipient is Mrs. Shannon Gribble.

Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget. And to find a truly great friend of public education is really difficult sometimes, but when we do find one, they are always impossible to forget. This is so true about Shannon. Every day, she displays what a true Friend of Education represents.

Before she began her current career at Tuscarawas County Job and Family Services in New Philadelphia, Shannon was a police officer for Newcomerstown. Many of the skills she exhibited in law enforcement, she carried over to JFS, especially her quick wit and sense of humor. Her vast background knowledge of the families in Newcomerstown, her leadership skills, and most importantly, her compassion, make her an exceptional asset to JFS and their clients.

Shannon always made it a priority to visit the schools and talk to the students and staff, whatever her job.

Being a graduate of Newcomerstown Schools herself, Shannon has always been very supportive of our schools. Her three children have attended Newcomerstown Schools, and she could

See GRIBBLE, page 2

often be found attending their activities and sporting events, sometimes even in uniform.

In public education, there are many circumstances which warrant calls to Job and Family Services. The person who frequently would do the intake and receive our statement was Shannon. Shannon has always supported all of the Newcomerstown administrators and teachers and followed through by calling us back with any new information which would help us understand situations better. She always completed what she said she would do. It is well known among many employees in our district how she always kept her "eyes and ears" open for the betterment of our school district. She helped all of us understand the families and their culture by taking the extra time to explain who is related to whom, and other dynamics which can only be learned by experience. This is greatly appreciated. Shannon has also been a key person in the success of our district's annual Back to School Fair. She has represented the Department of Job and Family Services since the event was started. In most recent years, she has organized donations from her co-workers to provide free "Newcomerstown Schools" T-shirts to every child in attendance along with school supplies.

I believe many other educators would say that Shannon is a positive link between our school, our students and families, and her agency. John Lennon sang, "I get by with a little help from my friends." Well, all of us at Newcomerstown Schools get by with more than just a little help from Shannon. As a token of our thanks and appreciation, we would like to recognize her for the many years of dedication to the Newcomerstown Exempted Village School District and the countless families she has helped over the years.