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University of Pikeville honors distinguished educators

October 29, 2018 12:00 AM
Pikeville, KY
The Distinguished Educators Hall of Fame was established in 2010 to honor those whose contributions to learning have inspired generations of students and made a significant impact in the field of education.

This year’s inductees include Cassandra Akers of Stanville, Teddie Renee’ Buchanan (posthumously), Tammie Hobbs Hensley of Pikeville, Deborah Lemaster of Paintsville, Jeff Shannon of Prestonsburg, Modena Sallee of Lexington, Stephen A. Trimble of Paintsville and Emily Fay Warne of Paintsville.

Cassandra Akers received her bachelor’s degree from Alice Lloyd College, her master’s degree and Rank I in special education from Morehead State University and her Principalship from Morehead State University. Teaching physical education and special education for 19 years, she was able to give back to her alma mater of Betsy Layne High School in Floyd County as teacher, coach, assistant principal and then as principal.

Akers is part of the Kentucky Basketball Association’s Court of Honor and is a Betsy Layne High School Hall of Fame inductee. She also served as Regional Representative to Kentucky Association-School Administration (KASA) for the mountain regions. A memorable moment for Akers was in November 2015 when her school was selected for a visit with Bill and Melinda Gates as well as members of the Gates Foundation.

She has been married to her husband Ronnie for 27 years and has four children, Donnie, Kim, Justin and Alex.

Teddie Renee’ Buchanan served in the Pike County School System for more than 27 years. She taught fifth grade math at Millard Elementary School and was a curriculum coordinator at both Millard Middle School and Mullins Elementary. Before retiring in December 2017, she was vice-principal at Mullins Elementary School.

She received her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Pikeville College in 1989 and her master’s degree in education as well as her Rank 1 in principalship through Morehead State University.

Buchanan showcased her leadership skills not only in the Pike County School System but also at the district and statewide levels. Her list of contributions to education included serving as gifted and talented coordinator for both Millard and Mullins schools, participating on the district and regional gifted and
talented committee, maintaining membership in the Kentucky Association of Gifted Education, and as a teacher leader in the district for the Literacy Design Collaborative through Kentucky Valley Education Cooperative (KVEC). She constructed professional development for teachers in reading and writing for
the Literacy Design Collaborative, was chosen by the Kentucky Department of Education to write K-PREP questions, and served on numerous committees at
her respective schools and the district. She served three years on the Pike County team of the Kentucky Department of Education English/Language Arts Network, was a member of KVEC English/Language Arts Professional Action Network and led regional trainings. Buchanan was also often asked to give presentations at the Kentucky Association for Academic Competition, Kentucky Reading Conference and Kentucky Teachers of English Conference.

In addition to her professional achievements, she loved the Lord more than anything and was a Christian for more than 37 years. After being saved at the Lick Creek Holiness Church on September 17, 1981, Buchanan was frequently requested to preach sermons, teach Sunday school, sing and play piano.
She is survived by her husband of 37 years, Billy Ray Buchanan; a son, Branham; and a daughter-in-law, Bryanna.

Throughout her 22 years as a teacher, Tammie Hobbs Hensley’s passion and talent for helping children realize their fullest potential has always been apparent
to colleagues and friends. Currently serving as a teacher in Special Education at Pikeville Elementary, Hensley began her career in Kindergarten but has since made special education, with a focus on reading, her life’s work. Hensley received her bachelor’s degree in exceptional childhood education and education from Pikeville College (PC ’94) and her master’s degree in education for early elementary from Morehead State University.

“It’s such a blessing to see their faces light up when they understand something new, when they see the progress they are making, or when their mindset changes from ‘I can’t’ to ‘I can,’” said Hensley.

In addition to her work in the classroom, Hensley serves at First Baptist Church of Pikeville on various committees, teaching Sunday school and helping with both the children’s choir and nursery. She and her husband Jeff have a son, J.C. (PC ’04); daughter-in-law, Dr. Brooke Hensley (University of Pikeville-Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine ’13); two daughters, Erin Newsome (PC ’07) and Kate Hensley; and a granddaughter, Addison Newsome.

As a long-time educator, Deborah Lemaster not only taught Spanish and visual arts but was part of the important touches at Johnson Central High School that made a big impact on students. From helping with flowers at graduation to travelling across the country with students, Lemaster’s classes felt her support throughout her 21-year career.

Lemaster received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Art Education from Morehead State University and her degree in Instructional Supervision from Union College.

In June 2018, she was a recipient of the Johnson County Board of Education’s Golden Eagle Award. After almost a decade of serving as an academic coach, she was a 2015 inductee of the Kentucky Association for Academic Competition Academic Hall of Fame in Louisville.

As a well-respected and experienced educator, Modena Sallee spent her career serving students both in the classroom at Pikeville High School and at a state level with the Kentucky Department of Education.

Sallee received her bachelor’s degree at Pikeville College (PC ’70) and
her master’s degree and Rank I at Morehead State University. At Pikeville High School, Sallee taught English and Speech and Drama while serving as Senior Class Sponsor. A highlight for Sallee was also directing the first production performed in Pikeville High School’s Alumni Auditorium. As a writing consultant for the State of Kentucky and Literacy Supervisor for the Pike County Board of Education, Sallee committed her career to becoming a champion for students.

In addition to her professional work, she is a member at First Baptist Church of Pikeville, where she serves as director of the women’s ministry as well as participates on several committees. She has also served as a Sunday school teacher.

Sallee is married to her husband Richard and together they have a daughter, Abby, a son, Richard II; a daughter-in-law, Susan; and three grandchildren, Tripp, Jake and Kate.

Jeff Shannon received his bachelor’s degree in industrial and engineering technology, a master’s degree in career and technical education and Doctorate of Education from Morehead State University. As a published educator, Shannon holds numerous certifications and is a member of the Kentucky Colonels, CompTia Educator Network, the National Association of Industrial Technology and an online learning consortium.

Shannon has written and received three grants and has been awarded the Alumni Tower Supervision Award from Morehead State University. He was also named a Tech Teacher of the Year finalist with Kentucky Tech as well as named the 2016, 2017 and 2018 Congressional Skills Education Program Winner.

Shannon currently serves with the Kentucky Department of Building and Housing and as an adjunct professor for the University of Louisiana’s Department for Graduate Education and the Kentucky Department of Education with Prestonsburg High School. He continues to make an impact across the Commonwealth through his work with the Kentucky State Board of Technical Education, the Eastern Kentucky Federal Credit Union Board of Directors and the Trinity Christian Academy Board of Directors.

With an impressive career in education, Stephen Trimble continues to serve as a consultant for School Administers/Superintendents for the Kentucky Educational Development Corporation.

A Johnson Central High School graduate, Trimble received his bachelor’s degree in physical education from Pikeville College (PC ‘81), a master’s degree in health/physical Education/Recreation from Morehead State University, his Rank I in School Administration at Morehead State University and his Superintendent’s Certification from Union College.

Trimble has been an advocate for students in a variety of roles for Johnson County Schools from Health and Physical Education teacher to Head Football Coach. He also was the school’s first Johnson Central High School graduate to return as principal and superintendent.

During the course of his career, Trimble has received several accolades including 2007 Johnson Central High School Hall of Fame inductee, 2009 Kentucky Association for Academic Competition Hall of Fame as Administrator Supporting Academic Success, 2010 Kentucky Educational Development Corporation (KEDC) Superintendent of the Year and the 2014 Paintsville/Johnson County Chamber of Commerce Lifetime Achievement in Education award.

Trimble has a passion for volunteering. He has attended two mission trips to Peru and volunteers his time with multiple youth sports. Trimble is a former officer and board member for the Paintsville Little League and Johnson County Cal Ripken and is an Elder at the Paintsville Church of Christ. He has also served as a member of the Kentucky Department of Education Commissioner’s Superintendent Advisory Council, and the KHSAA Advisory Committee. A past chairman of KEDC, he was also a member of the Governor’s Transforming Education Task Force.

Trimble and his wife Pam have two sons, Drew and David; two daughters-in-law, Kristina and Miranda; and two grandsons, Noah and Jake.

Emily Warne, daughter of Kris and Deborah Warne, came to eastern Kentucky to teach. After graduating from Freed-Hardeman University with a bachelor’s degree in English, she began her work immediately. Assigned to teach high school sophomores, she was quickly able to get a handle on the content as well as the first-year challenges new teachers face. Warne serves as a shining example of discipline for her classes. Although highly structured, her classes help students develop discipline while engaging students of all abilities in curriculum.

Warne was asked to teach a drama class, not fully aware how she could grow the course. She quickly built a program widely known throughout the region. Warne developed dinner theatre fundraisers that blossomed into a popular musical theatre event that attracted schools from across the region with evening performances at the historic SIPP theatre in Paintsville. The amphitheater at the Mountain Home Place also hosts the Johnson County High School (JCHS) Players for summer performances. Warne orchestrates rehearsals, performances and hand-made costumes with parent volunteers and student interns. The musical theatre program has showcased the talents of many students who needed time to shine and were given that opportunity in Warne’s program.

Photo caption: Pictured ar­e members of the University of Pikeville Distinguished Educators Hall of Fame Class of 2018. From left, Deborah Lemaster, Stephen A. Trimble, Emily Faye Warne, Tammie Hobbs Hensley, Jeff Shannon, Modena Sallee, Cassandra Akers and Billy Ray Buchanan, who accepted Teddie Renee’ Buchanan’s award.

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