Catholic High School Teachers of the Year Named for DC/Maryland

March 05, 2007

Sr. M. Catherine Mindling, RSM, Spanish teacher at St. John’s College High School in Northwest Washington, DC, has been named the recipient of the Sr. Mary Lucille, RSM Outstanding Teacher Award, the highest teaching honor bestowed by the Archdiocese of Washington and the Catholic High School Principals’ Association (HSPA) each year.

NBC Washington Bureau Chief Tim Russert, who helped establish the award in honor of one of his favorite teachers, and Washington Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl presented Sr. Mindling with the award during a ceremony held March 5 at St. Aloysius Church in Northwest Washington, DC.

Outstanding veteran and new teachers from 13 area Catholic high school also were recognized during the ceremony, which began with a keynote address by Mr. Russert.

The Sr. Mary Lucille, RSM Outstanding Teacher Award was established in 1997. Named in honor of one of Mr. Russert’s favorite teachers who challenged him and convinced him that he could make a difference in the world, the $1,500 award recognizes a teacher from the Archdiocese of Washington who exemplifies many of the attributes Mr. Russert admired in Sister Mary Lucille. Educators must have five years experience in Catholic schools and be nominated by their principals to be eligible for this honor.

“The community of St. John’s College High School is overjoyed by the selection of Sister M. Catherine Mindling, RSM, as recipient of the Sister Mary Lucille, RSM, Outstanding Teacher Award,” said Mr. Jeff Mancabelli, principal of St. John’s. “She has demonstrated extraordinary zeal in helping the school fulfill its mission to provide an excellent education to a diverse student population within a faith community. She continues to serve as a model of commitment to the education and development of all facets of her students’ lives, taking a profound personal interest in each. She is truly a minister of grace in the classroom.”

Sister Mindling, RSM is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese. She has taught at Saint John’s since 1985, where she is department chair. Among her many initiatives, she has conducted immersion programs for students of Spanish in Mexico and participated in adult education programs in ESL, French and Spanish.

The veteran and new teachers who were recognized during the ceremony are listed below:

Washington, DC
Archbishop Carroll High School: Kristin Jackson-Nesmith (veteran); Steven Sodders (new)
Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School: Christine Murphy (veteran); Amy Gapen (new)
Gonzaga College High School: Leslie Keiser (veteran); Marcus Washington (new)
St. John’s College High School: Sr. M. Catherine Mindling, RSM (veteran); Kenneth Hammann (new)

Academy of the Holy Cross, Kensington: Sue Murphy (veteran); Christine (Chrissy) Persinger (new)
Bishop McNamara High School, Forestville: Charles Shryock (veteran); Michael Pozniak (new)
DeMatha Catholic High School, Hyattsville: Douglas A. Tschiffely (veteran); Brian L. Brown (new)
Elizabeth Seton High School, Bladensburg: Deborah Emshwiller (veteran); Sundai Riggins (new)
Our Lady of Good Counsel High School, Olney: Andy Collins (veteran); Donte Tates (new)
St. Mary’s Ryken High School, Leonardtown: Barbara Ives (veteran); Valentina Barbesta (new)
St. Vincent Pallotti High School, Laurel: Patrice Evans (veteran); J. Marshall Lancaster (new)
Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart, Bethesda: John Hogan (veteran); Don Barron (new)
The Heights School, Potomac: Andrew Reed (veteran)

The Archdiocese of Washington serves 33,000 students in 111 elementary, secondary, special schools, and early learning centers in the District of Columbia and Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George’s and St. Mary’s counties in Maryland.

Susan Gibbs
Director of Communications
[email protected]