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Heart of Lakewood recipients demonstrate commitment to students

group photo with board

On June 20, the Lakewood Board of Directors recognized its 2023-24 Heart of Lakewood recipients:

Melanie Irish, LWSD staff/Lakewood Education Foundation/Class of 2024 Grad Night Committee

Melanie with board

Melanie Irish, Career Center Specialist at Lakewood High School, goes above and beyond to ensure that every student receives individual attention and advice to navigate the college application process and provide information about different careers paths. Mrs. Irish “fosters a nurturing environment where we feel encouraged to explore our passions and pursue our dreams with confidence,” wrote one graduating senior.

This year, Melanie was the co-president of the Class of 2024 Grad Night committee, which raised $45,000 to provide students with a safe senior party following graduation. Melanie is also the vice president of the Lakewood Education Foundation, a nonprofit that raises funds for programs, activities, materials, and scholarships for students. “If Melanie is aware of a student with a need, she ensures that the need is met,” wrote Sara Pevny.

Jahna Smith and Ken Christiansen, Lakewood H.E.L.P. Committee

Ken Christiansen and Jahna Smith were recognized for their leadership on the Lakewood H.E.L.P. Committee. While advocating for Lakewood’s two levies, wrote Bryan Toutant, Jahna’s leadership “was marked by a collaborative spirit and an unwavering focus on the success of our school district. She is a dedicated, determined, and passionate advocate for education, continually showing us how deeply she cares about Lakewood schools, students, and our community.”

Board with Ken

Ken’s knowledge of utilizing “voter buddies” and his determination showed his heart for our school district, supporting education and our students, wrote Jahna Smith. “His efforts will have a lasting impact for many years to come.”

Congratulations to our Heart of Lakewood award recipients. We are grateful for your contributions to our community!