Grosse Pointe Schools Recognize Volunteers

Eleven parents were recognized Monday by the Grosse Pointe Public School Board and administration as the district's annual distinguished volunteers.

The Board and administration recognized 11 parents Monday as this year's distinguished volunteers. Each of the volunteers were nominated by one or more people either employed by the district or fellow parents.

Many of the school board members talked about how invaluable the volunteers are and what an asset they are to every day operations of each of the schools, the extra curricular activities and more.

Each of the volunteers received a golden, engraved apple and a certificate of recognition.

The volunteers recognized this year are:

Michele Bauer, from Defer Elementary

She was nominated by Renee Borowicz and Principal Karen Sullivan. Bauer currently serves on the Parent Teacher Organization Board as well. Her contributions include:

  • a fundraiser to sell birdhouses donated by a former teacher in an auction that raised $2,000 for the school
  • creating the walking club, a lunchtime enrichment class
  • creating fundraiser activities that were implemented district wide such as the Defer Dragon Fun Run, a spaghetti dinner/dessert auction, a pancake dinner and a road rally
  • working as a room mom
  • collecting box tops
  • volunteered at the last seven Defer Fall Family Festivals
  • co-chairing the 2007/08 auction in which $60,000 was raised

Margaret Biglin, of Richard, Brownell and South

She was nominated by Laura Huebner with support from Cynthia Sohn and Brownell Principal Michael Dib for her years of volunteerism at all of the schools her five children attended while also working full time. Her contributions include:

  • being the PTO president
  • driving for field trips
  • chairing a successful auction to raise funds for air conditioning
  • dressing the part of the Wicked Witch of the West
  • chairing the 50th anniversary celebration for Brownell Middle School
  • serving as the PTO president
  • doing public relations for the tin can auction, PTO and household sale
  • serving as the vice president of enrichment for Mothers' Club
  • next year she will serve as the vice president of scholarships for the Mothers' Club

Steve and Paula Burguron, of Mason Elementary

The Burgurons were nominated by the staff of and its Principal Elaine Middlekauff for their daily behind-the-scenes work. Their contributions include:

  • helping direct the traffic daily to ensure the flow is orderly and safe for students and staff
  • volunteering for lunchtime and on the playground
  • assisting with fifth grade camp storer fundraisers
  • driving on field trips
  • serving as title 1 parent representatives
  • serving on the strategic planning focus group

Lisa Cooper, of North High School

Cooper was nominated by Parents Club President Terri McLauchlan and North Principal Tim Bearden for her contributions that have saved money. Her contributions include:

  • serving as the North Parents Club secretary
  • updating the club's website
  • creating a digital version of the club's newsletter, which has saved thousands
  • serving in communication roles
  • volunteering at Parcells and Monteith before moving to North

Dr. Dona Johnson Beach, of Maire, Pierce & South

She was nominated by Carmen Dusina and South Prinicipal Matt Outlaw. Her contributions include:

  • volunteering at , Pierce and South
  • planning PTO events at Maire, including coney nights, Maire Fair and room parties
  • hosting a progressive dinner at her home
  • chaperoning field trips
  • helping with school musicals
  • serving as the Italy trip coordinator for this year's trip
  • volunteer speaker for the Family Center

Catherine Kinnaird, of Monteith Elementary

She was nominated by Principal Keith Howell and the Monteith staff for eight years of volunteerism that has truly positively impacted the school. Her contributions include:

  • categorized books for teachers and students in the library by reading levels
  • cleared and organized the basement for the PTO
  • playing an instrumental role in the PTO playground project
  • completing beautification projects for teachers
  • volunteering in the office and classroom
  • volunteering at events

Anne Nyboer, of Maire Elementary

She was nominated by Liz Naporano and Maire Principal Sonja Franchett for her dedication to the school and years of volunteerism. Her contributions include:

  • running a lunchtime enrichment activity of a knitting club
  • volunteering in the classroom, lunchroom, clinic
  • driving for field trips
  • chaperoning fifth grade camp
  • serving as the box top coordinator for six years
  • helping with two Maire Fairs

John Pomaville, of Pierce Middle School

Pomaville was nominated by Maire Principal Sonja Franchett, the Pierce PTO and Maire PTO President Susan Griffin. His contributions include:

  • remodeling the Pierce Student Health Clinic, including sanding, plaster work and repairing the room on weekends and evenings
  • building and painting scenery for Maire's performing arts since 2007
  • helping rebuild a vintage car in 2009 for the Maire Auction, which raised $25,000

Gretchen Schock, of Monteith Elementary

She was nominated by David Denomme and Principal Keith Howell. Her contributions include:

  • initiating monthly room parent meetings
  • serving as the vice president, formerly the treasurer, for PTO
  • chairing secret Santa, the book fair and an ice cream social

Karen Zoia, of Poupard Elementary

Zoia was nominated by Christy Heugh Davenport, the School staff and its Principal Penny Stocks for her work at the school that often begins before school hours and continue through the day and even after schools. Her contributions include:

  • forming a new title one parent group to help parents of students struggling academically or socially
  • serving on the PTO for three years
  • coordinating the box tops program
  • keeping Scholastic Book count
  • ordering items for the school store and for the positive behavior support reward program
  • finding/recruiting other volunteers to help in classrooms, at lunch and for field trips
John Hetzler April 24, 2012 at 11:11 AM
Congratulations - and more importantly, thank you - to all the volunteers.
Michelle Louisell April 24, 2012 at 02:11 PM
Thank you to all of these volunteers throughout the district. You make the Grosse Pointe Public Schools a special place to be.
Judy Gafa April 24, 2012 at 05:26 PM
I too would like to thank all the volunteers that give of their time, their talents and their self to make all Grosse Pointe Students educational experience so wonderful. The contributions and partnerships that are formed with schools, teachers and other parents are invaluable to the district. Bravo to all our volunteers. Judy Gafa President of the GP Board of Education.


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