Interim Superintendent, Deb Semenick, recognized and praised the retirees for their various contributions to the district. She joked that the happiest employees in the district are the retirees. Semenick reflected on the way that interacting with their students changed their lives.
These are the names and brief bios of those retiring from Finneytown Schools:
- Jan Barlag originally hired by the district in 1992 as an All-Day Kindergarten teacher.
- Debbie Betz-Farrell attended grades K-12 and graduated from Finneytown Schools before joining the district as a staff member at Cottonwood Elementary in 1995. She transfered to Brent in 1997.
- Lea Browne joined the Finneytown staff as Secondary Campus Counselor in 1990, after serving in similar positions in North Carolina, Kentucky and Ohio.
- Marty Frecka joined the Finneytown staff in October of 1979, earning $2.87 per hour. She spent several years at Brent before transferring to the high school library in 1982.
- Janis Henderson came to Finneytown in 1995 after earning her teaching degree from Xavier University as a non-traditional student. Janis began her Finneytown years at Whitaker before moving to Brent teaching 2nd grade in both schools.
- Carol Howard performed her student teacher assignment at Cottonwood Elementary in 1972. That same year, Carol was hired as a 5th grade classroom teacher at Cottonwood. Ten years later she submitted her resignation from classroom teaching after the birth of her son. In 1995, Carol returned to Finneytown as an Intervention Specialist at Brent.
- Diane Jenkins joined the Finneytown staff in 1990 as a 1st grade teacher, and after several years moved to a Kindergarten classroom. In 1997, Diane achieved National Board Certification. She was later nominated to serve on the Board of Examiners National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.
- Sue Mueller after having subbed for the district for several years, in 1996, was hired as an educational assistant at Whitaker.
- Marya Rusinak joined the Finneytown Music Department in 1992. During her time at Finneytown, Marya has directed the Cottonwood Kids Chorus, sponsored the Cottonwood Classical Music Club, and guided numerous Thanksgiving programs and concerts at our elementary schools.
- Gail Seifert joined the Whitaker staff in 1974 as a 6th grade teacher. In 1989, Gail was assigned to the gifted program at Whitaker, known at the time as Gateways. During her years with Finneytown, Gail was nominated for a Hixon Teacher of the Year Award and was named PTA Educator of the Year. In 2011, she received the University of Cincinnati Cincinnati USA Outstanding Educator Award, having been nominated for the recognition by a former student.
Finneytown congratulates these teachers and staff members for their dedication to the students and community. They will be missed and we wish them the best in their retirement.