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Las Vegas teacher named ‘LifeChanger of the Year’

Terry Kennedy, President & CEO, Appreciation Insurance & Financial Services; Elizabeth Pesco, LifeChanger of the Year award recipient; Lewis Layton III, Assistant Principal, Ethel Staton Elementary School. (Photo provided)
Terry Kennedy, President & CEO, Appreciation Insurance & Financial Services; Elizabeth Pesco, LifeChanger of the Year award recipient; Lewis Layton III, Assistant Principal, Ethel Staton Elementary School. (Photo provided)
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Updated: 3/01/2013 11:52 am
LAS VEGAS – National Life Group today announced that Elizabeth Pesco, a Las Vegas elementary schoolteacher, has been selected as a 2012-13 LifeChanger of the Year award recipient.

Pesco, a fifth-grade teacher at Ethel Station Elementary School, received the award today at a surprise ceremony during a school assembly. She is one of 10 educators from across the country to be recognized by National Life Group for making a positive difference in the lives of students by exemplifying excellence, positive influence and leadership.

"Elizabeth Pesco is a shining example of the powerful, positive influence educators can have in the lives of their students,” said Mehran Assadi, CEO of National Life Group. "Her demonstrated ability to motivate and inspire students to learn and succeed makes her a true life changer.”

Pesco was selected from more than 400 nominations in 33 states. As a LifeChanger of the Year, she receives a $3,000 cash prize which is split between a $1,500 individual award and a matching $1,500 contribution to Ethel Station Elementary School.

Vanessa Jewell, whose son was one of Pesco’s students, nominated her for the award. Jewell’s son struggled academically and socially after moving to Las Vegas from Tennessee. Pesco recognized that he needed assistance and placed him in an intervention program, provided after school tutoring, and helped him improve his social skills. Pesco was compassionate yet never lowered her expectations or the rigorousness of her teaching methods for Jewell’s son. As a result, his grades improved significantly and he is now talking about going to college and is saving money for tuition.

“Ms. Pesco recognized that my son was struggling and went above and beyond to help him. She changed the course of his educational career,” said Jewell. She has impacted his life in so many positive ways. She is an exceptional educator and deserving of this award and I know many other parents who feel the same way.”

Winners were chosen by a National Life Group selection committee that includes teachers and school district staff. Nominations are submitted by students, parents, teachers, and administrators. Nominees must be full-time K-12 educators, teachers, principals, or any member of the school's staff who makes a positive difference in the lives of students.

“The important work that teachers perform on a daily basis and the critical role they play in the development of our children is worthy of special recognition and reward,” said Assadi. “Outstanding educators make a difference and are a valuable resource in our communities.”

-- From news release
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