Distinguished Teachers 2013


KAIRS recognized 2013 Distinguished Teachers during the
Annual Meeting’s Hall of Fame Banquet – 2/13

Christian Schools

Awards13ListerBeverly Lister has motivated students for 28 years as an outstanding music educator at Berean Academy in Elbing. She serves as the instrumental instructor for grades 5-12, teaches guitar and directs the Pep Band. The Fine Arts trophy case at Berean is filled with awards given to both her small and large ensembles.

A master teacher, Mrs. Lister is committed to helping her students pursue excellence. She is well respected on a statewide level as a music educator and often serves as a judicator at music festivals.

“Mrs. Lister truly believes that her class is as important as any other class and that her students are more well-rounded in their life and educational experience as a result of being involved in her program,” Terry Tilson, Berean Superintendent said. “Additionally, she is a servant-leader who loves the Lord and serves others via the ministry of Christian education.”

Mrs. Lister earned her bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Friends University in 1977 and a Master of Music Education from Wichita University in 1986.

Diocese of Dodge City

Awards13VictorRegina Victor is a devoted preschool teacher of 4-year-old children at St. Dominic Catholic School in Garden City. Since 2003, Mrs. Victor has brought creativity and outstanding preparation to her classroom. One of her unique instructional strategies utilizes artists Monet and Piet Mondrian to study primary colors and geometric shapes.

Mrs. Victor pays close attention to her students’ developmental level and communicates about the childrens’ activities regularly with their families. Her Catholic faith also motivates her to develop beyond the whole child towards a holy child.

“Teachers that teach in the grades directly above Mrs. Victor comment that it is quickly obvious which students have been in her class,” said Trina Delgado, Superintendent, Dodge City Diocese and formerly Mrs. Victor’s principal. “One teacher said that at the beginning of each year she goes to Mrs. Victor’s room and simply says, ‘Thank you.’”

Mrs. Victor began her career in education in 1987 after attaining her Bachelor of Science degree from Fort Hays University.

Independent Schools

Awards13BuettgenbachGary Buettgenbach has taught art with great creativity, wit and enthusiasm at Wichita Collegiate for 23 years. The sign on his door reads, “The Earth without ART is just Eh.” Mr. Buettgenbach (Mr. B) teaches studio arts, video and photography. His video lab is a favorite largely because of the Video Magazine (VMag), where students chronicle the school year through video cameras. Mr. Buettgenbach has also been
the Prom sponsor for 20 years.

“Gary Buettgenbach is one of those special teachers who has a positive impact on every student he comes into contact with,” Chris Ashbrook, Upper School Head, Wichita Collegiate School, said. “Gary is an artist extraordinaire, and a teacher completely committed to his school. His greatest gift however, is his selflessness and ability to make students feel comfortable about themselves and confident enough to express their talents and feelings artistically.”

Mr. Buettgenbach received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree (1978) and a Bachelor of Arts in Education (1989), both from Wichita State University.

Lutheran Schools

Awards13ThaeteLorraine Thaete is a beloved first grade teacherat Christ Lutheran School in Overland Park.

Since 2003, her devotion to her students has been obvious as she builds relationships based on love and trust. Mrs. Thaete’s experience, which began in 1967, and ongoing educational training make her a highly valued staff member, peer counselor and mentor to younger teachers.

“As a new principal this past year, Mrs. Thaete has provided me with great input and insight during my transition. She connects with young people in a special way – building bridges to students’ minds by studying their hearts,” said Steve Vandemark, Principal, Christ Lutheran School. “Mrs. Thaete is an engaging and professional presence both in the building and in the hallways. Her calm demeanor, global perspective and positive presence are indispensible for our school.”

Mrs. Thaete earned an Associate of Arts degree from Concordia Junior College (Nebraska) in 1965 and a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1967 from Concordia Teachers College.

Diocese of Wichita

Awards13SchwartzDee Schwartz is a highly dedicated Lead Teacher who has served at St. Mary Parish Catholic School in Derby-Rose Hill since 1998. She divides her time between teaching Middle School science and fulfilling the responsibilities of being St. Mary’s Lead Teacher.

As a science teacher, she has helped every student to meet or exceed the Kansas Science Assessment for the past five years. As the lead teacher, Mrs. Schwartz is indefatigable while she oversees all technology issues, standardized and state assessments, chairs the middle school and sits on the Principal’s Advisory Committee.

“Mrs. Schwartz is hard working, positive, a problem solver, and, most of all, one of the most caring educators I have ever met,” said Richard Montgomery, Principal, St. Mary Parish Catholic School, Derby-Rose Hill. “She doesn’t just teach the Catholic faith, she joyfully lives it.”

Mrs. Schwartz received an Associate of Arts degree from Allen County Community College in Iola (1977) and her BA in Education (1985) from St. Mary of the Plains in Dodge City.

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