Classified employee of the year named
“Sure, no problem.”
That’s usually the response Eric Pacheco, head custodian at Zephyr Cove Elementary School, gives when someone needs help, makes a request, or has a special situation that needs his attention.
His diligent support of the staff, students, parents and visitors of the school earned him the 2016-17 Classified Employee of the Year Award from the Douglas County School District. Pacheco was presented with the honor recently at the CVIC Hall.
“I was completely surprised and speechless,” said Pacheco. “It makes me feel appreciated.”
Pacheco was chosen from 18 nominees.
Pacheco is completing his fourth year working for the Douglas County School District.
He started with the district as night custodian at George Whittell High School in July 2013. He was promoted to head custodian at Zephyr Cove in March 2014.
Whether it’s playing a “mean game” of basketball with the intermediate kids or carefully assisting the younger students with the “delicate task of opening a Gogurt without the package exploding,” he makes connections with the students and is always ready to lend an ear, accepts a hug or stay past his time to help someone in need, the district cited while honoring Pacheco.
He has taken students on snowshoe hikes, offered to stand out on recess duty and can find a desk for a student out of thin air and get it into the classroom before the bell rings. He also worked hard to keep the school safe and accessible with all of the snow on campus this past year.
Last spring Pacheco helped Principal Nancy Cauley on the creation of the Environmental Science Center.
“I enjoy what I do and love being with the kids,” said Pacheco.
Also recognized for their outstanding performance and contributions to Douglas County School District were: Jennifer Mason, cashier II, ASPIRE Academy High; Kathy Jones-Tynes, SpEd para aide, Douglas High; Bernadette Esquivel, school registrar, George Whittell High; Jeanette Leonard, custodian, Carson Valley Middle; Suezanne Westman, SpEd para aide, Pau-Wa-Lu Middle; Kelly McCue, media tech III, C.C. Meneley Elementary; Cathy Donat, playground aide, Gardnerville Elementary; Kathy Arnote, secretary I, Piñon Hills Elementary; Tandy Erickson, secretary I, Minden Elementary; Lucy Pierce, program aide, Scarselli Elementary; Barbara Valdez, ECE para aide, Jacks Valley Elementary; Jason Spotts, maintenance tech II, Buildings & Grounds Department; Carlos Lopez, custodian, Custodial Services; Rudy Robles, assistant cook, School Nutrition Program; Pat Toft, health service nurse RN, Student Health Services; Stephanie Scheick, secretary I, Special Services and Michelle Heydman, bus driver, Student Transportation.