Manitoba's Celebration of Excellence in Teaching

Minister's Award Recipients 2008-2009

2008-2009 Recipients

Teaching Excellence Award – Early Years

Recipient: Ms. Patricia Goosen


Ms. Patricia Goosen
Grade 3 Teacher
Robert Smith School
Lord Selkirk School Division

Goosen’s dedicated commitment to student learning and achievement is recognized by administrators, colleagues, students and parents. Whether acting as the Math Olympics organizer, Queen of the Nile or Professor Plant, she offers her Grade 3 students a variety of innovative learning opportunities which inspire students to reach their full potential.
Complete biography

Teaching Excellence Award – Middle Years

Recipient: Ms. Sylvia Marshall


Ms. Sylvia Marshall
Grades 4 – 6
Lord Wolseley School
River East Transcona School Division

A multi-age program (Grades 4 – 6) developed by Marshall reflects her community approach to learning where children of different ages and abilities learn together in a comfortable, inspiring setting. Each child is considered an equal, valued participant and is appreciated for who he or she is and the way each grows and learns.
Complete biography

Teaching Excellence Award – Senior Years

Recipient: Mr. Brian Martel


Mr. Brian Martel
Grade 9 to 12 Teacher
École communautaire Réal-Bérard
Division scolaire franco-manitobaine

Martel has created numerous unique and challenging learning opportunities for his students. He accompanied 25 youth to Iqaluit, Nunavut, to increase his students’ awareness of Inuit life. Through his initiative, students from St. Pierre-Jolys and Ile-des-Chênes will be participating in the Asper Foundation Human Rights and Holocaust Studies Program which includes a visit to the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC.
Complete biography

Outstanding New Teacher Award

Recipient: Ms. Vanessa Rigaux


Ms.Vanessa Rigaux
Holland Elementary School
Prairie Spirit School Division

Vanessa Rigaux of Holland Elementary School in the Prairie Spirit School Division is the recipient of the Outstanding New Teacher Award. Rigaux was thrust into her first teaching position. On the last day of her student teaching, she was offered a position to start the following Monday due to an emergency medical leave. She not only managed these challenging circumstances but used the opportunity to make a difference.
Complete biography

Team Collaboration Award

Recipients: Ms. Laurie Bachewich, Ms. Pamela Ryznar and Ms. Susan Davar


Ms. Laurie Bachewich,
Ms. Pamela Ryznar et
Ms. Susan Davar

Onanole Elementary School
Rolling River School Division

Inspired by Mahatma Ghandi’s powerful words ‘Be the change you want to see in the world’, these three educators were very involved in the Friends Involved in Stopping Hunger (FISH) project. Activities included distributing Christmas food hampers, volunteering at Samaritan House in Brandon and the Empty Bowl project that raised $2,000 to help relieve local hunger.
Complete biography

Outstanding School Leader Award

Recipient: Mr. Dan Giesbrecht


Mr. Dan Giesbrecht
Garden Valley Collegiate
Garden Valley School Division

Giesbrecht has spent his entire career at Garden Valley where he has been a teacher, vice-principal and principal. He has superb administrative skills, a commitment to innovative educational leadership and is dedicated to young people. Garden Valley Collegiate is one of the fastest growing schools in the province because of the arrival of large numbers of immigrants to the region. Under Giesbrecht’s leadership, the school has developed a variety of programs to address the growing diversity and needs of students. As a trained physical education instructor, he coaches both school and community sports teams and can boast about having coached and mentored numerous professional athletes.
Complete biography