2022 recipients of WHS awards of excellence pose for picture with principal Mary Asfendis

May 26, 2022 - 

Four staff members have been honored by the Westfield High School community with awards of excellence. WHS principal Mary Asfendis announced the award winners during morning announcements on May 23.

Nominated by students, social studies teacher Kimberly Leegan is the recipient of the 2022 Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award, established to annually recognize a teacher who, through both excellence in teaching in the classroom and a demonstrated commitment to intellectual pursuits beyond the classroom, serves as a model and inspiration to the WHS community to strive towards excellence.   

The 2022 recipient of the Above and Beyond Award is English teacher Elizabeth Palamara.  Students were asked to nominate a tenured teacher or counselor who they felt has made a difference in their life as a student or who they witnessed making a difference in another student’s life either socially, emotionally, or academically.   

Social Studies teacher Ryan Daly received the Parent-Teacher-Student Organization (PTSO) Teacher of the Year Award, for which parents and students nominate a teacher who communicates enthusiasm, is encouraging, motivating, and  readily available to individual students, attempts to elevate standards, encourages students to excel to their greatest potential, is cheerful, flexible, sensitive, and a good role model. 

For the Robert and Linda Foose Memorial Award, students were asked to nominate any WHS staff member, except the principal, for a specific contribution to the educational process at WHS during the 2021-2022. Production manager Matthew DiFabio is the 2022 recipient of this award, which is named for a former principal and teacher.  

The awardees will be honored by the Westfield Board of Education at a public meeting on Tuesday, June 14, 2022.