Enid Public Schools announced their 2022-23 Support Professionals of the Year following their announcement of Teacher of the Year Candidates.

The finalists, nominated by their colleagues, are Tina McGowen, Sue Richmond, and Lizbeth Zarinana.

Tina McGowen wears many hats at Adams Elementary, assisting with the STEAM lab and library as well as being a crossing guard, basketball coach assistant and PTO president. She was nominated for her willingness to help wherever needed. Colleague Megan Mayfield said, “Tina is always thinking of ways to inspire students to grow in their learning and makes connections with students. She has a heart of gold showing school pride and showcasing our school to the community.”

Sue Richmond has been with the district for 10 years, starting at Coolidge Elementary and moving to Adams Elementary to continue working with principal Reba Gregory. Richmond is a special education paraprofessional but has had a hand in creating a caring and fun space at Adams by implementing “Joke Thursdays”. Briana Padgett, fellow Adams employee, nominated Robinson for Support Professional of the Year saying, “She comes to work each and every day with a huge smile on her face. All of the kids absolutely love her! She is truly an amazing person and EPS is so very lucky to have her!”

The third finalist is Lizbeth Zarinana at Taft Elementary. Zarinana is a library aide and enjoys seeing her student’s face light up when she finds them a book they’ve been asking for. She is also invaluable with translating needs at Taft. Colleague Alicia Chick shared that Zarinana has been instrumental in helping a student in need. Chick said, “Liz took the time to help them with starting their day off on the right foot every morning and checking in on them throughout their day. Not only is this student thriving but they are enjoying coming to school and we have been able to build a bridge, through Miss Z, that allows us to communicate and build those ever-important relationships. She is invaluable to Taft!”

EPS invites the public to attend the EPS Foundation Education Celebration to celebrate the building-level Teachers of the Year as well as announce the final Support Professional of the Year winner. The event will be held on December 7 from 5-6 p.m. at the Enid High School gymnasium and will be broadcast live on YouTube and Channel 19 by EPS*tv.