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The Roanoke Rapids Graded School District hosted its third annual Celebration of Excellence Thursday evening  at East 10th Street Church of Christ Fellowship Hall

“This night is all about celebrating our best teachers, staff, and administrators who go above and beyond every day for the children of this community, “ said Larry Catalano, assistant superintendent.  

Veteran Educator Angela Mallory, who was named Chaloner principal this week, was named the district’s Assistant Principal of the Year.  

“I do what I do because I love my students,” Mallory said. “Not many people realize this, but my mother went to Chaloner in the 1950s.  She loved people and loved serving others. Everyday when I walk in that building, I honor her by loving people and serving the students there.  This is such an honor.”

Eight people were nominated for the Support Person of the Year:  

The nominees were:

Jennifer Wrenn - ACES

Sherrie Warren- Belmont Elementary School

Doug Snyder - Manning Elementary School

Sabrina Hunter- Chaloner Middle School

Johnnie Caine- Roanoke Rapids High School

Janice Hubble- Roanoke Rapids Early College High School

Anna Beets- Clara Hearne

Rob Woodard - Central Services

Hunter, a counselor at Chaloner, took home the honors.  

“This is such a blessing. I love helping our students,” Hunter said after receiving her trophy.  

The 2019 Principal of the Year — Terrell Jones — will go on to represent RRGSD at the regional level.  

“I have a shirt I wear at Belmont.  It reads: ‘I’m the Principal, if you think my hands are full, you should see my heart.’  That’s why I do what I do and that sums up how I feel tonight,” Jones said.

RRGSD Public Information Officer Les Atkins introduced the Teacher of the Year nominees by saying, “These finalists are outstanding teachers and are only a small selection of the dedicated and hard working teachers we have here in our district.  The children of our community are truly blessed to have such an amazing group of teaching professionals waiting to serve them daily in our classrooms across the district.”

The nominees for Teacher of the Year included:  

Heather Dickens - ACES Teacher of the Year

Trina Robertson - Belmont Elementary School Teacher of the Year

Elisa Smith - Manning Elementary School Teacher of the Year

Mary Rowe - Chaloner Middle School Teacher of the Year

Major Cynthia Bunch- Roanoke Rapids High School Teacher of the Year

Ashley Lynch - Roanoke Rapids Early College High School Teacher of the Year

Carol Wade - Clara Hearne Teacher of the Year

Bunch, the JROTC instructor, took the top honors.  She will go on to represent Roanoke Rapids Graded Schools at the regional level.  

Throughout her tenure at Roanoke Rapids, she has cultivated strong relationships with students and coworkers.

“Her students know her as a firm but loving leader who always has their best interests in mind,” said RRHS assistant principal Patrick Quast. “She gives selflessly to her students and if they have a need, she finds a way to fill it. Once she visited a student's home to check in on them and discovered they didn't have a refrigerator. She went down to the home improvement store and bought a refrigerator so the family could have food in the house. She didn't publicize or want recognition for this, but did it because it was the right thing to do and her heart is so genuine.” said RRHS Assistant Principal Patrick Quast.  

Bunch received hundreds of dollars in prizes and gift cards from local businesses and a golden apple trophy to display in her classroom from Roanoke Rapids Savings Bank.

“I drive an hour plus everyday to Roanoke Rapids High because I love my students.  I tell my cadets I love them everyday because sometimes we are the only ones that say it to them on a daily basis. Many of them even call me Mama Bunch.  I’m honored to receive this award.” Bunch said.