Two local teachers have been recognized for their contributions to art education.

The National Art Education Association, honored North Gwinnett High School’s Dallas Gillespie as the 2022 Outstanding National Art Honor Society Sponsor of the Year. This award recognizes the dedication of an NAEA member who sponsors an outstanding National Art Honor Society Chapter at his or her respective school.

Dallas Gillespie

“Having between 110-140 members and one of the largest NAHS clubs in the country has always been a labor of love,” Gillespie, who is chair of the visual art department at North Gwinnett, said in an email to the North Gwinnett Voice. “From face painting entire weekends, to working with special needs adults and participating in the annual NAHS state conference our NAHS members are the epitome of what serving in the community looks like.

“It is our students who join NGHS NAHS that deserve strong recognition with this award as they always strive to meet my high demands and are willing to commit to serving in the name of National Art Honor Society Members,” Gillespie continued, adding he would like to thank his chapter’s co-sponsor Karen Campbell, past co-sponsor Yvette Kim and former sponsor Debi West.

““It is evident that Dallas loves being an art educator and loves working overtime to ensure his students have a plethora of opportunities to share their art and talents with their communities,” West, the owner of WESTpectations Educational Consulting, said in a news release shared on the school district’s website announcing the awards.

Annie Park

Annie Park of Lanier Middle School has been named the 2022 Southeastern Region Middle Level Art Educator of the Year. This award honors an NAEA member from each of the association’s four regions for their outstanding service and achievement during the previous school year.

“I could not have grown into the art educator that I am today without the support of GCPS’ Fine Arts program,” Park said in the news release. “Twenty-two years of teaching art has taught me that you must embrace diversity, equity, and inclusion. I am forever grateful that I nurture middle school students’ creative minds every day.”

““Her passion for her subject is evident, and students thrive as a result,” Bryce Fulcher, principal at Lanier Middle School, said of Park. “She tirelessly promotes the work of students by actively seeking opportunities to exhibit their art at the State Capitol, Hartsfield/Jackson International Airport, the High Museum of Art and many other venues. For the past few years, she has even produced an innovative local art show where she has the students stand with their work and she takes an impressive group picture using a drone, a symbol of her creativity and love of blending technology and art.”

NAEA is a professional membership organization exclusively for visual arts, design and media arts education professionals.

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Deanna Allen has served as editor of the North Gwinnett Voice since June 2021. Effective communication and creative design are her passions.

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