Jan. 25, 2023
January Hudson Has Heart Award Recipients Announced
HUDSON, NY — At the Jan. 24 Hudson City School District Board of Education Meeting, Superintendent Dr. Lisamarie Spindler publicly announced the next three recipients of the “Hudson Has Heart” awards, representing January 2023.
In October 2022, the Hudson City School District announced the launch of a monthly recognition titled the “Hudson Has Heart” Awards to acknowledge the selfless contributions and passionate members that make the Hudson City School District community what it is. Individuals considered are nominated by peers for making a positive difference in Hudson City School District by selfless, passionate actions and being dedicated to the district.
Numerous nominations were sent in of students, staff and community members, respectively, who elevate and proudly represent the culture and values that are cherished and implemented here in Hudson.
Starting with the student category, Besham Burgess received glowing nominations for his determination to be a leader in the classroom, on the baseball field and in the community as a junior volunteer firefighter.
“Besham is a very coachable student-athlete and is always willing to help out with whatever is needed.” Spindler said. “Members of the fire department described this young adult as “a great young man, respectable student and community leader in truly portraying the lessons learned from his parents, teachers, and friends on a daily basis.”
In the staff category, Donna Coons was selected for her volunteerism as the advisor of the High School’s Honor Society, JV Volleyball coach and the manager of the backpack food program.
“Senior High School Principal Derek Reardon said Donna Coons ‘works extremely hard and cares for their students very much, while at the same time doing what’s in their best interests by holding them accountable’,” Spindler said.
Director of Education & Public Programs for The Olana Partnership Carolyn Keogh was selected as the recipient of the Community Member award based on her contributions to and direct involvement with the district
“Whether it’s holding spots in The Olana Partnership’s summer camp for Montgomery C. Smith scholars, designing a new place-based field trip for students to explore their hometown and its role in American Art History, or facilitating the exploration of new art materials with students and their families at our Saturday Academy, this person has shown a passion and continued commitment to Hudson students, families, and their community while displaying a willingness to inform our student base of the importance of preserving and interpreting Frederic Church’s Olana,” Spindler said. “The Olana Partnership’s President, Sean Sawyer, describes this individual as ‘truly extraordinary. They are that very rare individual who combines great professional drive and ambition with true compassion and understanding.’”
As the district congratulates its third edition of recipients, it would like to remind the community that this is indeed a monthly award and to keep submitting nominations for January’s recipients. Voting will close on Feb. 24 at 3 p.m. and the winners will be announced at the Jan. 28 school board meeting.
Student nomination:
Staff nomination:
Community member nomination:
Photo from left: Superintendent Dr. Lisamarie Spindler, Board of Education President Willette Jones, board member Kjirsten Gustavson, Community Member recipient Carolyn Keogh, board member Selha Graham, board Vice President Mark DePace, Student recipient Besham Burgess, board member Lakia Walker, Staff member recipient Donna Coons and board member Lucinda Segar.