Submitted by Rotary Club of Lakewood.
The Rotary Club of Lakewood recently honored educators from both the Clover Park and Steilacoom school districts as well as a Lakes High School student.
Gail Clark, Cherrydale Elementary School
Teacher Gail Clark from Cherrydale Elementary School in Steilacoom Historical School District and counselor Dan Million from Clover Park High School in Clover Park School District were recognized by Lakewood Rotary as educators of the month for November. Lakes High School senior Tillman Zinn was named November Student of the Month.
Gail Clark has served as a teacher at Cherrydale Elementary School for 22 years and was recognized for being an outstanding educator, nurturer of children and collaborator.
According to Principal Douglas, one of the important reasons Gail was nominated is her belief in being a lifelong learner. “My belief is that one of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves and the children we influence is to continue to grow and learn as people and professionals. Gail does just that,” said Douglas.
Gail is one of the founding members of the school’s Diversity Team. She helps lead and eagerly participates in district professional development. She is a leader who continues to help others understand and implement social emotional learning initiatives that positively impact children.
Dan Million, Clover Park High School
Dan Million has served as a counselor at Clover Park High School for 12 years and is an unwavering champion of students. His primary focus is giving students what they need to navigate, a too often, uneven playing field on their journey to graduation.
Million brings a depth of knowledge and understanding of graduation requirements, policies, outside resources, and college and career readiness that have made him a school and district asset.
He is adept at creating plans that meet the needs of each learner and truly cares for each student’s success in fulfilling that plan. He also leads a team of Student-2-Student mentors who work to help new students feel welcomed and included in the school.
According to Principal Stults, “Dan is truly about putting students first and making Clover Park High School a great place for kids.”
Tillman Zinn, Lakes High School
Lakes High School senior Tillman Zinn is a distinguished student, teammate and servant leader with a caring heart. When Zinn attended Lancer Academy before school started his freshman year, he proactively asked Assistant Principal Lindh if he and a few other students could get some garbage bags to pick up water bottles and wrappers that other students had left behind on the play field. He greets students and staff warmly as he navigates the halls throughout his day and everyone reciprocates his warm greeting. And, it is not uncommon for him to talk to or sit with students who are sitting alone in the cafeteria.
In addition to his servant leadership, Zinn is a distinguished student. He qualified for National Honor Society at the end of his sophomore year. Over his 4 years at Lakes, Tillman has maintained a 3.471 cumulative GPA, while being a two-season athlete in cross country and track and field.
Last year, Tillman was a district finalist and ran in the ambulatory division event in the state meet for Track and Field. He has participated in cross country for four years and was voted a leadership team member by his teammates this year. He was the district champion in his event this year, earning him a qualifying position at state.
His determination over these four years was instrumental in the creation of a new race in the state tournament: the ambulatory race. Coaches from across the state advocated for Tillman and students like him to have representation and an opportunity to show case their grit, determination and ability in this new race. Tillman ran in the inaugural state race and earned a bronze metal.
Congratulations to our Lakewood Rotary educators and student of the month!