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‘Teacher of Year’ Anderson Bend Christmas Parade grand marshal


The Bend Christmas Parade Committee has named Heather Anderson, Oregon’s 2016 Teacher of the Year, as the 2016 Grand Marshal for Saturday’s parade.

“You may not recognize her name, but you will certainly understand why she was selected once you read her story”, said Parade Chair Ernie Gilpin. “Heather is a remarkable women and doing one of the most important jobs on the planet, teaching our next generation of citizens in elementary school.”

Heather is a native Oregonian, living in Bend since she was 2 months old. She is married to Sev Anderson and has 2 active boys, Orion, 5 and Logan, 8.

At an early age, she knew she wanted to be a teacher, just like her mother and grandmother. That passion and love for teaching she attributes not only to her family, but the teachers she encountered throughout her school age years. Anderson has been fortunate to work alongside some of those same teachers that had such an impact on her learning experience, like Catherine Cummings from High Desert Middle School, who retired this past June.

Anderson is a graduate of Bend Senior High, Oregon State University and earned a master’s degree from George Fox University in 2001. Her first teaching job was in Guadalajara, Mexico at 20 year’s old. For the past 5 years she has been teaching fourth grade at Juniper Elementary School and was nominated for Teacher of the Year by the school’s Principal, Dan Wolnick.

Anderson was recently honored again with the 2017 National Education Association’s “Teaching Excellence” award. This prestigious award is given to only 40 teachers throughout the U.S. and she will travel to Washington D.C. in February to participate in a Global Learning Fellowship.

But what really makes Heather smile are the kids. “Teaching a child to read…and when it finally clicks, it opens up the world for them,” she said. “And it’s a great compliment to me when the parents are interactive in their child’s education and thank me for helping those kids become participating adults.”

“When a student comes back and thanks you for the time and attention given that helped them in life, that makes it all worthwhile,” Heather shared. “I have students pursuing careers in the medical field, Military and more. They actively seek me out on Facebook and Twitter to share their story and want to let me know how they are doing now. I love it!”

The Bend Christmas Parade will be held on December 3 in d owntown Bend, beginning 12 noon at the corner of Wall Street and Greenwood Avenue.

Heather will be riding in a Red Lexus Convertible driven by Wendy Puller. She will be accompanied by Dan Wolnick, Principal at Juniper Elementary. Heather’s husband Sev and sons, Orion and Logan, will be riding on the Pak 31 Cub Scouts Float.

The Parade Committee is also pleased to announce that Sharron Rosengarth, the 2016 Deschutes County Pioneer Queen, will be riding in a Model A Ford during the parade.

For more information on the parade please visit our website at .

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