Howell Public Schools has named Karen Helsper, Three Fires Elementary paraprofessional, as its 2017-2018 Service Person of the Year, and Karen Doran, Howell Public Schools financial assistant, as its 2017-2018 Support Person of the Year.
In her role as a paraprofessional, Helsper works tirelessly to ensure that her students are successful. She often spends time at home preparing materials for the next day and is always willing to lend a helping hand. Even in stressful situations, Helsper remains calm, compassionate and positive.
“Karen goes above and beyond every day. She works tirelessly to help her students be successful. Last year, in my classroom, she bought items with her own money that she knew would motivate a student,” said Amy Johanningsmeier, Three Fires Elementary kindergarten teacher in her nomination of Helsper.
As a financial assistant, Doran supports all employees of Howell Public Schools with their fringe benefits. Doran is always willing to answer questions from employees regarding their insurance benefits, health savings accounts and flexible spending accounts just to name a few. Whether an employee has one or one hundred questions, Doran is patient and kind as she helps each employee understand the differences between the benefits packages offered.
“Karen is amazing in this position. She is patient, kind and willing to answer a million questions from people needing different answers. She is able to support all Howell Public School staff as the insurance forms and expectations continue to change,” said Jennifer Hibbard in her nomination of Doran.
The Service Person of the Year award honors an outstanding paraprofessional, general education aide, copy clerk, mentor, hall monitor, food service employee or maintenance worker. The Support Person of the year honors an exceptional secretary, main office clerk, library services coordinator, bookkeeper or computer technician.
A committee of 14 district stakeholders met Nov. 15 to consider 11 nominations for Service Person of the Year and 16 nominations for Support Person of the Year. After several hours of reviewing the nominations, the committee selected Helsper and Doran as this year’s winners.
The Howell Board of Education will honor both Doran and Helsper at a board meeting in February.