She's energetic. She's innovative. She's daring, even.
She's Amy Pottinger and she's the Craig Daily Press' Teacher of the Year.
The idea for the award came about during one of our weekly editorial board meetings. We discussed how education is one of the least-appreciated careers and yet one that is most deserving of praise.
We'd like to think the ultimate "thank you" is a hug from an adoring student. And it likely is. But it's nice when the rest of the community -- outside of the district -- recognizes the good things going on at our schools.
And there certainly are plenty of good things.
When Pottinger accepted the award for Teacher of the Year, she was shocked. She said she couldn't believe she won the award. She expected another teacher, someone more well-known or outgoing about his or her career, to win the honor.
But we had something different in mind.
Pottinger is fairly new to teaching. She completes her fifth year at Moffat County High School this week.
She's youthful and excited, and she pushes the envelope. It's hard for us to know what goes on inside a classroom. We have to rely on student letters for that. But we can see what she's doing in the school, beyond the desks and books.
Just look at the work she put into "Aida" and "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
She was not afraid to cast students in a production with difficult music written by a gay man. She did not let a few scoffs from students deter her from presenting a Shakespearean masterpiece, and she did not flinch at the idea of having a Renaissance-style feast before the show.
She co-coaches the speech and debate team, which had its best year yet.
She's making a difference in the lives of youths, and she's stirring up involvement in the community.
That's what teachers are supposed to do.
We have so many gifted and selfless teachers in our district. Pottinger is one of them. She takes education out of the classroom and onto the stage and behind a podium, and pushes students to try something new.
That's what we want this award to be about. We feel Pottinger is the perfect example of what this award should symbolize.
It's not about a teacher who has been recognized time and again by organizations or the newspaper. It's about teachers who do their best every day and encourage their students to think outside the box.
We commend Pottinger and the rest of our teachers for a job well done. We hope you'll join us in congratulating her.
We look forward to receiving even more nominations for next year's award.