Local Rotary Clubs recently honored six high school teachers for exemplyiing "Service Above Self". The honorees are: Megan Cappadonia (Proctor), Elizabeth Cissi (New Hartford), Melody Morris (Whitesboro), Tim Papienuk (New York Mills), Dwight Putnam (Notre Dame), and Kathleen Washburn (Clinton).
 Teachers Megan Cappadonia, Elizabeth Cissi, Melody Morris, Tim Papienuk, Dwight Putnam, Kathleen Washburn.
The Rotary Clubs of Utica, New Hartford and North Utica/Whitestown honored six area teachers recently at their annual Outstanding Educators Awards Program. The program, presented on-line during Utica Rotary’s weekly Zoom meeting, is an annual event of the area Rotary Clubs’ community service committees.
The awards presentation culminates a year-long program during which area Rotary clubs hosted students from each of six area high schools at their weekly Rotary meetings. Students had an opportunity to introduce themselves to the Rotary members, and to learn about Rotary’s community, regional and international service, which are the fulfillment of the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self.”

At the end of the school year, the students from each school are asked to select the teacher whom they believe exemplifies the Rotary motto, and the values of Rotary, as exemplified in its Four Way Test:
  • Is it the Truth?
  • Is it Fair to All Concerned?
  • Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
  • Will it be Beneficial to All Concerned?
Utica Rotary Club President Joe Caruso said: “This annual awards program is the perfect near-ending to the Rotary year -- an afternoon of inspiration, received from both the inspiring educators we celebrate and the accomplished, grateful and enthusiastic students who honor them.”

The six honored teachers are:
  • Megan Cappadonia of Proctor High School.
  • Elizabeth Cissi of New Hartford High School.
  • Melody Morris of Whitesboro High School.
  • Tim Papienuk of New York Mills High School.
  • Dwight Putnam of Notre Dame Junior/ Senior High School.
  • Kathleen Washburn of Clinton High School.
The nominating students introduced and spoke about their choice during the Zoom meeting, with each teacher addressing the gathering and receiving an engraved plaque form a participating Rotary Club.