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2019-20 District Awards

May 15, 2020

Pflugerville ISD celebrated its star teachers and staff members Thursday night with a virtual event announcing its district teachers of the year along with several other honors. 

With the annual banquet to honor the teachers, rookie teachers and humanitarians of the year from each campus cancelled due to shelter at-home and COVID-19, the district hosted an online celebration live on Facebook and YouTube to announce the finalists and overall winners of the district awards.

This year’s PfISD Elementary Teacher of the Year is Lydia Salaiz from Pflugerville Elementary. The physical education teacher for the Pfire Ants, Salaiz has established a goal-setting program for the students that follows them year-to-year throughout their time at PES, and she has had Olympic gold medalists visit the campus for Marathon Kids to inspire her students to achieve their goals, no matter what.

The Secondary Teacher of the Year award went to Christopher Aiken from Hendrickson High School. He is a special education teacher and emphasizes social skills with his students utilizing his sense of humor to connect with students and get his lessons to resonate with them. He also used his military background and experience playing football to build strong relationships along with his “connect before you correct” motto.

Elementary Rookie Teacher of the Year was Olivia Malmsten from Northwest Leadership Academy, being recognized for her ability to teach beyond academics and emphasize teamwork and perseverance with her students.

Pflugerville Middle School’s Moises Correa was named Secondary Rookie Teacher of the Year. His contagious enthusiasm has made an immediate impact on the band hall for the Panthers and provided a spark for the students to improve their musicianship.

All four of these winners will receive a new laptop computer donated by Dell Industries and an honorary ring from Centex Recognition, in partnership with the Pflugerville Education Foundation.

PfISD Superintendent Dr. Doug Killian thanked the teachers and staff members for making this school year a successful one and praised them for their efforts during the pandemic to work together and creatively to keep the students first.

“PfISD is soaring because of you and I’d like to thank you all for that,” Killian said. “COVID-19 can’t take away all the incredible work and the accomplishments that you’ve made for us.

“Unfortunately, due to the circumstances, we are unable to host this event live. However, we choose not to let these circumstances define us. We will recognize our staff members because you’re doing awesome work for us.”

In addition to honoring the top teachers and rookies on each campus, the district recognized staff members who went above and beyond this year for several service departments within the district.

The Technology Department honored Michelle Mutuc as its employee of the year. Phat Tran from Parmer Lane Elementary was the district’s custodian of the year. The Grounds Department honored Ismael Ponce as its top employee for 2019-20.

PfISD’s newly minted Transportation Department recognized Greg Foreman as its employee of the year, and Janice Scrimshire from Brookhollow Elementary was honored by Aramark/Food Services as its shining star.

In his closing remarks during the presentation, Killian thanked all PfISD staff for stepping up when needed, becoming emotional when reflecting on the response of the district’s teachers, administrators and staff members.

“I am truly grateful, and I am truly honored to be part of a magnificent group of individuals,” Killian said. “Because of each of you I am proud to say that I work in public education.”

While this year’s awards banquet could not be held in person, it reached far beyond a ballroom to connect directly with the community this year. The district’s release of the awards announcement on Facebook Premier received more than 150 comments during the presentations and had more than 3,600 views, proving that even when apart, the PfISD Pfamily is still together.

PfISD 2019-20 District Award Winners
Technology Employee of the Year: Michelle Mutuc
Custodian of the Year: Phat Tran, Parmer Lane Elementary
Grounds Employee of the Year: Ismael Ponce
Transportation Employee of the Year: Greg Foreman
Aramark/Food Services Employee of the Year: Janice Scrimshire, Brookhollow Elementary
Elementary Teacher of the Year: Lydia Salaiz, Pflugerville ES
Secondary Teacher of the Year: Christopher Aiken, Hendrickson HS
Elementary Rookie of the Year: Olivia Malmsten, Northwest Leadership Academy
Secondary Rookie of the Year: Moises Correa, Pflugerville Middle

Rewatch the Virtual Presentation Below!