Every year, Harker employees who have been with the school for five years are recognized for their service to the community by receiving commemorative pins. Every subsequent five years, a diamond is set into the pin to signify the employees’ continued dedication. This year, three teachers celebrated a major milestone: 30 years with the school! Congratulations to Pete Anderson, middle school P.E. department chair; Gail Palmer, dance teacher and lead performing arts teacher for K-8; and Theresa “Smitty” Smith, lower and middle school athletic director. Professional accomplishments of our faculty and staff.
Diana Nichols, Harker’s former head of school who passed away in 2018, was inducted into the second class of the performing arts department’s Life in the Arts honorees. Nichols was the driving force behind the development of the school’s performing arts department and the creation of the Rothschild Performing Arts Center.
In May, speech and debate teacher Scott Odekirk was named Coach of the Year by the California Coast District of the National Speech & Debate Association. Odekirk was recognized for his students’ run at the 2019 NSDA National Tournament, in which Haris Hosseini ‘19 and senior Avi Gulati took first and second place, respectively, in original oratory.
Middle school math chair Vandana Kadam coached two teams to victory in February, when a team of eighth graders placed first in a Santa Clara chapter MathCounts competition and another group of grade 8 students became regional champions at the Middle School Science Bowl.