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District Announces 2024 School-Related Employee of the Year

District Announces 2024 School-Related Employee of the Year


Sarasota County, FL, February 29, 2024 – Sarasota County Schools is proud to announce that Stacy Lahdenpera has been selected as the district’s overall 2024 School-Related Employee of the Year. Mrs. Lahdenpera serves as the Administrative Assistant to the Principal of Riverview High School.


Mrs. Lahdenpera’s impact on the Riverview High students, teachers, staff members, and larger school community alike is evident. She is beloved by all and known for her compassion, strong work ethic, graciousness, and skill. Among her widespread job duties, Mrs. Lahdenpera manages staff absences and coordinates substitutes; the school rarely has difficulty securing substitutes, and many credit this to the numerous meaningful, positive relationships that Mrs. Lahdenpera has built between Riverview High School and the community at-large. At a time when schools nationwide are suffering from shortages of personnel, funding, and basic resources, she puts forth her maximum effort to ensure the teachers & staff members feel supported, all students receive a high-quality school experience, and the community remains connected to Ram Nation and invested in its success.


In her spare time, Mrs. Lahdenpera serves on Riverview High School’s School Advisory Council (SAC) as the Secretary, a role she has held since the 2019-20 school year. She has also served as a Classified Staff Representative and voting member of the SAC since first being nominated & selected for the council by her peers at the beginning of the 2021-22 school year. As one of the co-chairs & founding members of Riverview High School’s Social Committee, Mrs. Lahdenpera packs up and distributes fresh baked goods to staff on Fun Fridays – an initiative brought about by her special relationship with the local Detwiler’s Farm Market. In an effort to also nourish the hearts of her colleagues on Fun Fridays, she includes notes of encouragement and affirmation with each selection of baked goods to uplift her teammates and remind them of their crucial primary focus: fostering the success of every student, every day.


As the award recipient for Sarasota County, Mrs. Stacy Lahdenpera is now eligible for the overall state-level recognition. Please join us in congratulating Mrs. Stacy Lahdenpera and all of our 2024 School-Related Employees of the Year: 



Nominee Name


Anita McNamee

Alta Vista Elementary School

Nick Gerardi

Ashton Elementary School

Stephanie Vigeant

Atwater Elementary School

Officer Mark Larivee

Bay Haven School of Basics Plus

Nancy Hahn

Booker High School

Francisco Hidalgo

Booker Middle School

Kim Maszak

Brentwood Elementary School

Jo Studebaker

Brookside Middle School

Lisa Wagoner

Communications & Government Affairs

Brianna Browning

Construction Services

Peggy Landivar

Cranberry Elementary School

Michele Cox

Emma E. Booker Elementary School

Michael Watson

Englewood Elementary School

Euniswidaly Domenech

Exceptional Student Education

Inna Dicke

Facilities Services

Kristina Greene

Financial Services

Melissa Phillips

Food & Nutrition Services

Renée Silverthorne

Fruitville Elementary School

Sage Keck

Garden Elementary School

Jordan Shaver

Glenallen Elementary School

Carmen Lilly-Melgar

Gocio Elementary School

Alia Moncayo

Gulf Gate Elementary School

Claudia Mendez Noonan

Heron Creek Middle School

Dorie Cleere

Human Resources

Marina Vastag

Information Technology

Jennifer Moore

Lakeview Elementary School

Robert Boyd

Lamarque Elementary School

Mary Simpson

Laurel Nokomis School

Jasmine Simmons

Materials Management

William Ambrose

McIntosh Middle School

Victoria Noyes

North Port High School

Patti Manson

Oak Park School

Saturnedgson Olaince

Phillippi Shores Elementary School

Carla Milsop

Pine View School

Stacy Lahdenpera

Riverview High School

Norbert Seres

Sarasota High School

Sarah Martin

Sarasota Middle School

Christen Ralich

Southside Elementary School

Rachel Fadley

Student Services

Stephen Tuttle

Suncoast Polytechnical High School

Desiree Shkriuba

Suncoast Technical College

Tifni Martin

Tatum Ridge Elementary School

Tami Watjen

Taylor Ranch Elementary School

Keith Van Gorder

Toledo Blade Elementary School

Tameka Winder


Madison Dill


Gerson Paniagua

Tuttle Elementary School

Kelly Marsh

Venice Elementary School

Angela Canevari

Venice High School

Genoveva Garcia

Venice Middle School

Shannon Quinn

Wilkinson Elementary School

Officer David Singer

Woodland Middle School


The Florida Department of Education’s School-Related Employee of the Year program annually recognizes outstanding education support personnel for the significant contributions they make to their schools and district school systems. The program honors one state representative and four finalists from the 67 school districts in Florida. All non-certified, non-instructional educational support personnel who serve at the school or district level — such as teacher aides, library aides, bookkeepers, bus drivers, food service staff and custodians, among others — may be nominated.


Sarasota County Schools’ School-Related Employee of the Year program is made possible through the funding and support of many generous sponsors. These schools & organizations are committed to the belief that rewarding and encouraging excellence in service is vital to a strong and successful public educational system. We appreciate their continued commitment to our school communities! Please join us in thanking all of the following sponsors:


  • Lead Sponsor
    • Sarasota Ford
  • Platinum Sponsor
    • Sarasota Classified/Teachers Association
    • Tandem Construction
  • Gold Sponsors
    • B&I Contractors
    • Halfacre Construction Company
    • Jon F. Swift Construction
    • Trane
  • Silver Sponsors
    • Bencor
    • Fastenal
    • Florida Blue
    • KidGuard School Insurance
    • McIntyre, Ewell & Strammer General Contractors
    • Robson Corp
    • Tampa Contract Floors, Inc.
  •  Bronze Sponsor
    • Sarasota County Association of Educational Office Professionals
    • Freedom Pavers
  • Award Sponsor
    • School Based Administrators
    • School District Administrators
  • School Sponsors
    • Alta Vista Elementary
    • Ashton Elementary
    • Atwater Elementary
    • Bay Haven School of Basics Plus
    • Booker High
    • Booker Middle
    • Brentwood Elementary
    • Brookside Middle
    • Fruitville Elementary
    • Garden Elementary
    • Glenallen Elementary
    • Gocio Elementary
    • Gulf Gate Elementary
    • Heron Creek Middle
    • Lakeview Elementary
    • Lamarque Elementary
    • Laurel Nokomis School
    • McIntosh Middle
    • North Port High
    • Oak Park School
    • Phillippi Shores Elementary
    • Pine View School
    • Riverview High
    • Sarasota High
    • Sarasota Middle
    • Southside Elementary
    • Suncoast Technical College
    • Tatum Ridge Elementary
    • Toledo Blade Elementary
    • Tuttle Elementary
    • Venice Elementary
    • Venice High
    • Venice Middle
    • Wilkinson Elementary
    • Woodland Middle





2024 SCS SREOY 1 – Mrs. Stacy Lahdenpera & Superintendent Terry Connor


Stacy Lahdenpera  and Terry Connor


2024 SCS SREOY 2 – Presentation of the 2024 Ford Bronco Sport by Sarasota Ford


Presentation of the 2024 Ford Bronco Sport by Sarasota Ford


Sarasota Ford, along with Tandem Construction, is pleased to offer the Sarasota County Schools’ School-Related Employee of the Year with a free two-year lease of a 2024 Ford Bronco Sport or cash prize as an extra reward for their tremendous contributions and service to the community. In addition, the winner and a guest will be wined and dined with a three-course meal at Le Mans Kitchen, a first of its kind restaurant inspired by Ford’s history of racing at the 24 hours of Le Mans in France, nestled inside its dealership that offers a world-class culinary experience.


“We are so honored to be able to provide this wonderful benefit to the Sarasota County Schools Employee of the Year. Giving back to the community is an integral part of our culture and success here at Sarasota Ford and we look forward to seeing the winner enjoy their new car and the new addition we can provide this year of world class dining and service at Le Mans Kitchen,” said Matt Buchanan, president of Buchanan Auto Group.