Special Awards Edition

June 16, 2023

2022-23 Service Awards Recipients!

Congratulations to the recipients of this year's RMS PTSA Service Awards! Your time and dedication are appreciated, and we celebrate your efforts! Descriptions of all three awards are available at the end of this article!

Golden Grizzly

Danish Majeed - Danish jumped in headfirst to address big issues like student safety and diversity. He imagined an event that would create a partnership between students and PTSA – highlighting the S in PTSA. He planned Cultural Night with a student-centered approach that turned into a huge success. When parents brought safety concerns to the PTSA, Danish met with our principal. He was prepared, professional, and caring, truly wanting to help ensure that our students are safe. Danish is a dedicated volunteer who exemplifies the meaning of the Golden Grizzly.

Cae Fawkes - Cae's health room is welcoming when students show up at her door. She offers whatever students need – comfort, snacks, first aid – you name it! Cae, like all nurses, has been through it all and continues to show up each day to greet students with kindness, address their needs, and then send them back to class. Beyond her day-to-day duties, Cae conducts vision and hearing screenings for all students at RMS. She led a team of volunteers with confidence, was approachable and in charge and knew many students by name. She is dynamic, molding herself into whatever is best for the student in front of her.

Neelam Ladhani - Neelam is optimistic, enthusiastic, and always willing to lend a helping hand when asked. Neelam has a passion for volunteering and likes to contribute towards community events and demonstrates deep commitment to making a positive and lasting impact. From laptop roll-out to vision and hearing, Neelam steps in to help whenever there is a call for volunteers. This year we would like to recognize Neelam for the contribution she has made to the RMS community by awarding her the Golden Grizzly.

Sridevi KonduriSridevi's exemplary performance as the VP of Enrichment this year has been truly impressive! She worked with each club and their leadership to help them get the resources they needed to be successful.  She's very approachable and easy to work with, constantly looking for how to do things better and improve everyone's experience.  Her passion for enhancing the experience of our students shines through in all her work, and the children benefit tremendously from it.  In addition to leading the enrichment programs, she served as a volunteer in robotics and in other many other ways throughout the year.  

Golden Acorn

Julie AkhterJulie has served as PTSA Secretary and President, and countless other ways during her time at RMS.  She is the ultimate volunteer. Her tireless efforts in our community, not just at RMS, but also for other schools and businesses in the area make where we live a better place. Julie is always willing to step in when someone needs support and is an amazing advocate for the students at our school. She will truly be missed when she goes, and we wish her the best in her next adventure. I’m sure her next community will be very lucky to have her.

Danielle KobersteinDanielle has led an amazing afterschool drama program for the students since 2019.  She is a brilliant human that does amazing things for so many. Her tenacity and positivity are infectious. She’s a leader who inspires her team, and a team player who values everyone’s efforts.  She has a great ability to delegate tasks, keep morale high, problem solve, and stay calm in stressful situations. She takes the time to learn all the students' names and get to know them individually.  More than just helping the kids learn stage craft, she works to create unity and friendship in the entire cast and crew.  The shows Danielle produces are truly an unforgettable experience for all students and adults involved. 

Outstanding Educator

Audra AndersonAudra is the beloved director of our RMS orchestra program.  Anyone who has watched one of the orchestra concerts has seen their joy in teaching and how students respond to them.  At the most recent field trip concert, orchestra boosters arrived in t-shirts that Mx. Anderson made for them. When asked for feedback for this award, the parents of their students asked for time to send in their praise in writing because they had so much to say. Students raved of them as their "favorite teacher". They are known to all students at RMS for their kindness, ukulele playing, and real concern for each student. Quote from students: "They're the nicest teacher at RMS." Quote from parents;  "Mx. Anderson helped the kids rediscover the joy that can be found in being an artist and in working together to create something beautiful."

Brenna NelsonIn the spare time she doesn't have, she is also one of the track coaches in addition to her work as a science teacher. As a coach, she cheers for and recognizes the accomplishments of each track team member.  As a science teacher, she makes every class interesting and fun. She finds interesting ways to approach curriculum topics like contests to see which paper boat floats best and genetic traits of monsters.  Even more importantly, Ms. Nelson is incredibly supportive and cares about each student as an individual. From a parent who had a child struggling with the return to school after COVID: "As my daughter struggled, we had many, many meetings with teachers and the guidance team to brainstorm ideas to help her and to track any progress. Ms. Nelson was the only teacher who came to EVERY SINGLE meeting, and she always had constructive notes and words of support."

Award Descriptions

Golden Grizzly Award
In 1996, Redmond Middle School PTSA established the Golden Grizzly Award to recognize excellent volunteers and members of staff at Redmond Middle School. A book is donated to the school library in each recipient’s name.

Golden Acorn Award
Each year, our PTSA gives the Golden Acorn Award to recognize a volunteer who has given outstanding service to our children and our school community. The Golden Acorn Award is very special and is given for continued and dedicated service to only one or two recipients a year. A Golden Acorn recipient receives a certificate and pin, his/her name is added to the recognition plaque, and a contribution in the person’s name is made to the Washington State PTA Scholarship Program. This foundation provides scholarships each year to high school graduates entering college and vocational school.

Outstanding Educator Award
The Outstanding Educator Award is awarded to an outstanding teacher, assistant, custodian, bus driver, administrator, or community member who has gone beyond the normal expectations of their jobs to make the learning environment fun, beneficial, and challenging for our students. The PTSA awards up to two Outstanding Educator Awards a year. An Outstanding Educator recipient receives a certificate and pin, his/her name is added to the recognition plaque, and a contribution in the person’s name is made to the Washington State PTA Scholarship Program. This foundation provides scholarships each year to high school graduates entering college and vocational school.

Thank You, 2022-23 PTSA Leadership!

A very special thank you goes to those on the RMS PTSA Board, Committee Chairs, and volunteers who do amazing work. We are a stronger and better community because of the time and support you give. Thank you to our Leadership Team and Committee Chairs, and volunteers!
Bear Tracks Newsletter is produced by RMS PTSA as a benefit to the Redmond Middle School Community. Bear Tracks is edited by PTSA Volunteers. Please submit articles via the Bear Tracks Online Submission Form. Articles are due on Thursdays, by 5:00 PM for publication the following Sundays. If you have any questions, please email beartracks@rmsptsa.org.
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Redmond Middle School PTSA 2.8.80
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