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Staff Spotlight

May 16, 2024

  • Position: Food Service Iroquois Middle School (breakfast and lunch)
  • WICSD service: 2½ years 
  • Hometown: Irondequoit. She is a 1977 Irondequoit HS graduate!
  • What's your WHY?: “I've always loved working with children so over 2 years ago I semi-retired and thought this position would be perfect. I feel very gratified that I can make sure the students are receiving nutritious meals everyday while they are in school. I love greeting them every morning and trying to start their day off with a smile. I listen to their requests for certain foods they desire and we try and satisfy them. Everyday when I leave school I feel as though it was rewarding to make sure every student was well fed.” 
  • What they’re saying: “She loves working with the students and staff! She is a dedicated, positive and a consistent employee that takes extra time to go above and beyond with ALL the kids she serves,” says Nicole Hobbins, a Teaching Assistant at Dake (and Mrs. Melvin’s daughter)!

May 8, 2024

graphic of Rich Jones
  • Position(s): Audiovisual Technician; Advisor, WIRQ-FM
  • Service in WICSD: 5 years (started February 2019)
  • Hometown/where you now reside: A Rush-Henrietta graduate, he lives in Irondequoit.
  • What's your WHY?: “I love working with teachers and students who need help fixing things that don't work or solving connectivity issues with laptops and projectors. I also video many of the events in the auditorium for the entire district and travel to schools when they need something recorded. I love being the faculty advisor for WIRQ (IHS radio station) and using my 30-plus years of experience working in commercial radio to teach radio and to make it a better product. I also enjoy being the voice of Roller Derby in Rochester, Pro-Wrestling and the Irondequoit Eagles Flag Football and Ice Hockey home games!”

May 1, 2024

  • Position: Reading Intervention Teacher
  • Service in WICSD: 17 years
  • Hometown: Irondequoit (Eastridge graduate)
  • What's you WHY?: “For as long as I can remember, my life goal was to teach. Now as a reading teacher, helping students unlock the reading code is a pretty extraordinary thing. Nothing compares to watching a child read a word for the first time. Their excitement is contagious. That is what motivates me every day. Literacy is the gateway to so many things. I believe we must work hard to empower all of our students by giving them the tools to be proficient readers and writers.” 
  • From a colleague: "Not only is she an absolute rock star teacher, but she creates the warmest, most affirming space for her learners. She is always ready and willing to support, coach and collaborate with teachers whenever asked!" says Briarwood third-grade teacher, Bernadette D’Amato.

April 25, 2024

graphic for LaVon Bucciarelli
  • Positions: College and Career Coordinator/Business Education Teacher/DECA Advisor
  • WICSD service: 15 years
  • Hometown/Where you reside: A Rochester native and Nazareth Academy HS graduate, she earned degrees from SUNY Brockport and Nazareth University; she resides in Greece.
  • What's your WHY? “My why is simply to instill a sense of hope and possibility in every student I encounter every day. Whether it is teaching in the classroom, working with DECA students or while advising students in the College and Career Center, for me, it has always been about helping students discover WHO they want to be in addition to discovering what they want to DO. I have the privilege of working with the whole student body and the community at large so I try to create a gateway that exposes students to as many potential career opportunities as I can as they grow into young adults. I work directly with industry professionals and community partners so that I always have a pulse on current trends and trajectories as well as skill gaps and emerging careers. Today there are opportunities for all students, no matter what their interests are, and I love being part of developing that process as each student tries to find their path. At the end of the day, the smiles and thank yous are great, but the light bulbs going on and the ‘ah ha!’ moments are enough for me.” 

April 17, 2024

graphic of Nom Christ
  • Position: Custodian assistant at Listwood Elementary
  • WICSD Service: 32 years
  • Hometown/resident: A Brockport HS graduate, he now lives in East Irondequoit.
  • What's your WHY: "I enjoy keeping the school safe and clean for the kids and staff.”

April 10, 2024

  • Position: 5th grade STEAM teacher at Rogers Middle School
  • WICSD service: 2 years
  • Hometown: A Victor HS graduate, she now lives in Fairport.
  • What’s your WHY? “Coming from a family of educators, I wanted to be a teacher since a very young age. I am passionate about fostering a classroom environment where students feel valued, supported, and encouraged. Being a teacher gives me the opportunity to create a safe space for students to grow, express themselves, and develop confidence in their abilities. I aspire to be the teacher that has students leave each day having learned something new, but more importantly have them know they are loved and cared for.”

March 28, 2024

graphic for Women's Staff Spotlight

Watch their video!

NADINE AVALLONE

  • Position: Lead Teacher TOSA, Iroquois Middle School
  • WICSD Service: 19 years; she was a fourth-grade teacher at Iroquois for 16 years
  • Hometown: Brockport

ANNA BAYERL

  • Position: School Library Media Specialist, Dake Jr. HS
  • WICSD Service: 36 years as a Librarian (26th at Dake)
  • Hometown: Buffalo; she now lives in Kendall

KATE DOBOSZ

  • Positions: Teacher, Reading Intervention at Southlawn; President, West Irondequoit Teachers Association
  • WICSD Service: 19 years; she was a first-grade teacher at Southlawn for 15 years
  • Hometown: Brighton (Our Lady of Mercy HS graduate); she now lives in the City of Rochester

AMY DONK

  • Position: Director of Student Services (7-12)
  • WICSD Service: 10 years, former Assistant Principal, Irondequoit HS
  • Hometown: Webster

KATE MROSZCZAK

  • Position: Custodian, Dake Jr. HS
  • WICSD Service: 14 years, formerly a cleaner at Dake and Southlawn and Custodian Assistant at Seneca
  • Hometown: Wola (Greboszowaka), Poland; she now lives in East Irondequoit

March 20, 2024

Graphic of Nicole Raisanen
  • Position: Events Coordinator. Helmer Nature Center, the district’s “45-acre outdoor classroom.”
  • WICSD Service: 2½ years.
  • Hometown: Originally from Salt Lake City, she has lived in West Irondequoit for 15 years.
  • What's your WHY?  “ I love the creative and energetic nature of event planning, plus getting to interact with and meet so many different people. I have truly loved working at HNC!” says Raisanen, whose three children attend our schools.

March 13, 2024

Sara Trost Graphic for Spotlight
  • Position: Special Education teacher, Southlawn Elementary
  • WICSD service: 16 years
  • Hometown: Greece (Greece Athena HS graduate)
  • What’s your WHY? “I love watching kids get excited when they realize they have just mastered or achieved something that is new or has been challenging. This classroom always pushes me to think outside of the box and grow as a teacher. For that, I am grateful! l also appreciate and love the team and staff that I work with at Southlawn. I could not ask for a better work family.”
  • What they're saying: "Sara is a phenomenal teacher who always looks to meet the individual needs of the students in her classroom. She is purposeful in her planning and implementation of supports. Sara’s passion for what she does if evident throughout the day," said Southlawn Principal, Gayle Pavone.
March 6, 2024
Collazo Spotlight graphic
  • Position: Network Technician, District wide
  • WICSD service: 16 years
  • Hometown: Rochester; he is a 1988 Edison Tech graduate
  • What’s your WHY? “I’ve always loved working with people and computers, so I wanted to work in a field where I could do both. I went back to school for Information Technology/Network Systems and right before I graduated, I was hired by WICSD for the IT Department. It has allowed me to work in the field doing what I enjoy. I also believe the charity I started in honor of my first daughter, whom I lost to a rare brittle bone disease called Osteogenesis Imperfcta, helped me develop customer service skills. I thoroughly enjoy helping others to achieve an understanding of technology. I am able to help students and educate people in an area that they are not.”

February 29, 2024

  • Position: Secretary, Colebrook Elementary
  • WICSD service: 2½ years
  • Hometown: Raised in Rochester and Fairport (2003 Fairport HS grad); attended St. Margaret Mary’s and Bishop Kearney. Mrs. Maloney has lived in Irondequoit for 12 years.
  • What’s your WHY? “Every day I have the privilege to assist our amazing students and their families and work alongside incredible colleagues. Being at Colebrook has been so fulfilling and rewarding, from the good morning smiles and hugs to the wave's goodbye at the end of each day. I am so proud and thankful to be a part of such a wonderful school community.”
  • What colleagues say:

“She goes above and beyond for every student, staff member and family. Colebrook runs so smooth because of her ability to think fast and problem-solve,” says Lona Cornell, Nurse.

“She is truly wonderful! She is always patient, kind and helpful. She does so much for our school, for our students and staff and always has a smile on her face. She brings such a feeling of warmth to Colebrook that people feel when they enter,” says Megan Will, Library Clerk.

“She goes above and beyond for teachers and can be counted on to problem solve any situation. She is just lovely,” says Leighann Szmania, Teacher.

February 14, 2024

Graphic of Amanda Tomchesson
  • Position: Third grade teacher, Seneca School
  • WICSD service: 7 years
  • Hometown: Grapevine, Texas 
  • What’s your WHY?  “Working with kids brings joy to my life, it's as simple as that! The laughter and love that is shared at Seneca School means the world to me.” 

February 7, 2024

Guetti Spotlight text
  • Position: School Counselor at Listwood and Southlawn
  • WICSD service: 25 years
  • Hometown: Native of Perry, N.Y.; resides in Geneseo 
  • What’s your WHY?  “I have considered it a true gift to work with the students, staff, and families I have over the years.  I have learned so much from all the individuals that I have had this privilege to cross their paths. I love seeing those tiny moments, such as a student's face lighting up when they’ve successfully transferred the social/emotional skills/strategies we worked on in sessions and lessons. I'm constantly blown away by my fellow staff due to their dedication, expertise and kindness. I feel honored to just contribute my part as we collaborate to help students shine.” 

January 31, 2024

  • Name: Victoria Gerhardt
  • Position: School Social Worker
  • WICSD service: 7 years
  • Hometown: Native of Albion now lives in West Irondequoit
  • What’s your WHY? “I'm passionate about teaching children lifelong social emotional skills that benefit their health, learning, coping, and relationships.  Self-awareness and emotional regulation are essential for optimal functioning!”

January 24, 2024

spotlight graphic of Erica Kane
  • Position: Intervention Teaching Assistant, Southlawn Elementary; VP of Student Affairs, WICPTSA 
  • WICSD service: 2.5 years
  • Hometown: West Irondequoit (IHS Class of 2001)
  • What’s your WHY? “I love providing support to students and then seeing their growth throughout the year.”
  • What colleagues are saying:  

“I have worked in the district for 18 years and I have never seen anyone work as hard as Erica. She greets students every morning, does afternoon parent pick-up at the front door and as the school day ends is there waving and smiling at family members picking up their child. She is simply amazing,” teaching colleague, Jori McKenna. 

“Erica is an incredible person.  She's kind, hardworking, focused and flexible.  Working with her is joyful,” Southlawn Lead Teacher, Kristina Bajardi. 

“Not only does Erica wear many hats and work extra hard, she does so with joy and enthusiasm,” teaching colleague, Lisa Poinan.

January 17, 2024

graphic of teacher Stephen Johnson with student
  • Name: Stephen Johnson
  • Position: Earth Science teacher, Irondequoit HS
  • WICSD service: 5 years
  • Hometown: Baldwinsville (near Syracuse); now Pittsford
  • What’s your WHY? “I love learning new things about the world around us. As a kid, I remember wondering why snow could be different from day to day - sometimes it packed really well to make great snowballs and other times it just fell apart. What gives?!"

January 10, 2024

Haley Spiro graphic
  • Name: Haley Spiro
  • Position: Dake Jr. HS Physical Education and Unified P.E. teacher.
  • WICSD service: 15 years
  • Hometown: Rochester (Brighton HS graduate)
  • What’s your WHY? “To bring ALL students together to celebrate their individual strengths, similarities and differences and be able to work cohesively in a movement setting. Exposing students to different lifetime accessible physical activities and sports that they may not have participated in prior and creating life-long lovers of movement.” 

SEE MORE SPOTLIGHTS!

January 3, 2024

Ashley Romano
  • WICSD service: 7 years
  • Hometown: West Irondequoit (2011 IHS graduate)
  • What’s your WHY?: "I want to have a positive impact on students' lives and the community. I love seeing smiling faces when offering fun treats and healthy food choices, and being able to help students meet one of their basic needs brings me joy!"

Dec. 20, 2023

Jeff Stenglein graphic
  • WICSD service: 27 in West Irondequoit, 30 overall; has coached football, basketball and baseball
  • Hometown: Greece (1987 Athena graduate); West Irondequoit resident for 30 years.
  • What's my WHY? "The kids. Helping kids grow academically, socially and athletically is what it is all about."

Dec. 13, 2023

Nina Rivera graphic
  • WICSD service: 4 years
  • Hometown: West Irondequoit (IHS Class of 2005)
  • What’s my WHY? "I'd like to think that I have/can make a positive impact on someone's life even with just a good morning and a smile!"

Dec. 6, 2023

Lauren Seeley
  • WICSD service:13 years (she also coaches Unified Basketball, Modified Girls Basketball & Soccer)
  • Hometown: West Irondequoit (IHS Class of 2003)
  • What’s my WHY? “Making the switch from business to education was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I am very thankful that I work at a school that embraces diversity, encourages inclusion and fosters a strong sense of community. Every day is a unique experience and being able to form positive connections with students as a teacher and coach is truly rewarding."

Nov. 29, 2023

Nicole Juzwiak
  • WICSD Service: 14 years
  • Hometown: West Irondequoit (IHS Class of 2005)
  • What’s My WHY? “My why is the smiling faces that come through my door each day eager to learn, grow, take risks and have fun. The impact we have on our students is huge. We play an important role in shaping their little minds and personalities, especially in the very early years. The hugs, questions, lightbulb moments and growth -- it's all amazing and makes every day an adventure!”

Nov. 22, 2023

Lisa Cronin
  • WICSD Service: 15 years
  • Hometown: Penn Yan, NY
  • What’s my WHY? “I remember sitting in college thinking back to my sophomore year in high school and how one person changed my life for the better. This one person was not my favorite teacher, was not my best friend, was not someone I even interacted with that often. I sat in my lecture hall thinking about how different my life may have been if I hadn't had that one person take the time to really see me and push me to be better. That one person was my school counselor. My hope for my students is that they always see themselves the way I see them. Talented, courageous, brave, kind, and strong. My hope is that I can inspire them to be their best selves and take risks so that they reach every goal they want to achieve.”

Nov. 15, 2022

sarah putman
  • WICSD Service: 8 years
  • Hometown: Liverpool, N.Y.
  • What’s my WHY? “I became a teacher because I am passionate about helping all students feel successful at school. It is really important to me that I help guide students through learning experiences that might be challenging at first but become easier over time with support and practice. I want all of my students to leave school each day feeling smart and capable no matter what we are learning.”

Nov. 8, 2023

Adrinne Raines & Katie Coleman
  • Mrs. Raines, Secretary to the Asst. Supt. for HR
  • WICSD service: 5 years
  • Hometown: Rochester
  • Mrs. Coleman, Support Clerk – Personnel
  • Hometown: Fairport
  • WICSD service: 5 years

What’s Our Why: “Giving back to the community that has given so much to our families.”

Nov. 1, 2023

Chris Taylor
  • WICSD service: 10 years
  • Hometown: West Irondequoit (IHS Class of 2006)
  • What’s my WHY? “I love going to work at Dake every day because of the sense of community that exists between the students and faculty.”

Oct. 24, 2023

Susan Glastonbury
  • WICSD service: 5 years
  • Hometown: Abercrave, Wales (UK)
  • What’s my WHY? "Working in the main office at Iroquois is so much fun. We never quite know what the day will bring, and I love having the opportunity to connect with just about everyone involved in the school. For me, the most important connections are those built with our students. It means so much to be able to celebrate their successes, and even more to be able to help problem-solve when they need a little extra support."

Oct. 18, 2023

Picture of three Teaching Assistants

Francine DeFay

  • WICSD service: 15 years
  • Hometown: Warsaw, N.Y.; Irondequoit for 26 years
  • What’s my WHY? “I struggled with math as a child, so having the opportunity to help children who also struggle is extremely rewarding. I also love making connections and building relationships with our students!”

Maureen Heron

  • WICSD service: 15 years
  • Hometown: Binghamton; Irondequoit for 25 years
  • What’s my WHY? “I love reading and math and want to help students so they will feel the same way.”

Mary Beth Lenzi

  • WICSD service: 23 years
  • Hometown: Webster; Irondequoit for 38 years
  • What’s my WHY? “One of the greatest rewards of intervention is seeing a student's eyes light up after grasping a new piece of knowledge. It is priceless!”

Oct. 11, 2023

Miriam Johnson
  • WICSD service: 5 years
  • Hometown: Rochester
  • What’s my WHY? “Teaching is rewarding in so many ways. I enjoy seeing my students make progress both academically and non-academically as well-rounded people and future contributing community members. Everyone comes from a different background and for this short time in their lives I get to be a positive role model, an educator and trusted adult. I love what I do because I have the opportunity every day to contribute to children having a happy and healthy future.”

Oct. 4, 2023

Joe Barber
  • Positon: Custodian, IHS
  • WICSD service: 5 years
  • Hometown: Irondequoit (Eastridge Class of 2003)
  • What’s my WHY? ‘One of the most important aspects of a great learning environment is having a clean and safe building. I take pride in providing that every day for students, staff and community members.”

Sept. 27, 2023

Jaime Juliano
  • Position: Reading Intervention teacher at Brookview
  • WICSD service: 13 years
  • Hometown: Fairport
  • What’s my WHY? “I believe that literacy is a fundamental human right and that every child deserves to feel the joy of learning to read. Literacy empowers children and improves their lives by expanding their capabilities to choose a kind of life they can value. It is the skill that opens doors to a world of opportunity and possibilities.”