Grisdale Awards Long-Haul Heroes

Mahee Bhatt, Co-Editor in Chief

    Principal Mark Grisdale always looks for new ways to appreciate and honor the staff. Starting August, Grisdale initiated the Long-Haul Awards which celebrate the staff members who have made a long term commitment to the school. He came up with the idea of these awards in a unique manner which has had an influential impact on the staff and highlighted the importance of commitment. 

    “I read a book last summer named ‘Dedicated’ by Pete Davis and the whole premise behind the book was that he was celebrating the fact that in today’s age there are so many people that are always looking for the next best thing or always looking for something better and so the whole premise is that we should celebrate the people who have sustained a commitment over a long period of time,” said Grisdale. “It made me realize that it has a lot of good points with teachers who have been in it for a while and not looking for the best thing they are looking to continue to make an impact where they are and with who they work with.”

    This book gave Grisdale the inspiration to start giving out these awards and he awards two each month to teachers who have been here for at least five years. He realized how difficult it is to keep a long commitment and the teachers who have done that ought to be rewarded. Especially in today’s world it is so easy to look for the next best thing and leave behind previous commitments as many people hold the fear of missing out. Many teachers at Tompkins have persevered through the hardships and new temptations and have stuck with their responsibility. 

    “I think that we have a lot of people that have made tremendous commitments and sacrifices and poured their heart and soul into whatever aspect of the school that it is, so now we can recognize these people. In the book he calls them the long haul heroes since they are in it for the long run and not looking to just bail on people,” said Grisdale. “I wanted to find a way to recognize people and try to do something that can reward or honor employees that are not always in the spotlight.”

    Whether it is teaching a core class, elective, or sport the diverse staff deserve to be given recognition. With the large staff, it is easy to overlook hard workers but this award will make sure they receive their appreciation. This will give the staff even more motivation to keep going as they know that their hard work is being acknowledged.

Here is a list of Tompkins’ Long-Haul Heroes so far:

August: Marco Jimenez and Anna Magallan

September: Katy Agiannidis and Erik Mikolajczhak

October: Ryan Labay and Ashley Park

November: Ramona Clark and Katy Sheffield

December: Anne Fazzini and Robert Ownby

January/February: Judith Laya, Jarred Darensbourg, Shetye Cypher, and Lauri Crestani

    Be sure to congratulate these recipients and keep a lookout for the future awards.