Together We Rise header image
  • We are excited to announce the October CSIU: Together We Rise Nominees!

    As announced at 2021 Professional Leadership Day (PLD), the CSIU has implemented a new award program, "CSIU: Together We Rise!" The program recognizes colleagues for their commitment to: 

    • Rising through innovative work: A person who has demonstrated innovation in the workplace.
    • Rising through service to others and self-care: A person who modeled service or self-care or who helped a person or team with service or self-care.
    • Rising through equity: A person who embraced equity in the form of learning (self-growth), teaching (providing or organizing professional learning experiences for others), or practicing (ensuring equity for served populations).

    October brought in 10 nominations for the awards! Please take a few moments out of your day to read about these valued members of the CSIU family and to congratulate them for making a difference by RISING through innovative work, service to others and self-care, and/or equity!

    Nominate a colleague for a November award by the 26th.

October Winners

  • Kevin Briggs


    Kevin Briggs
    CPSEL, Center for Schools and Communities (CSC)

    Rising through Equity Award, Nominated by Michelle Kern


    Why Kevin was nominated: 

    Kevin is on a mission to understand and promote the talents of his coworkers so the CSC can leverage them in creating an empowered workplace. Kevin recently conducted a CSC professional development to provide information on innovation in the workplace.  

    Susan Hertzog


    Susan Hertzog
    Early Head Start
    Rising through Service to Others and Self-Care Award, Nominated by Alison Horne

    Why Susan was nominated: 

    Susan is a hard working lady who is there for her families. She is also helpful to other staff and fun to be around.

    Lisa Black


    Lisa Black
    Facilities Team
    Rising through Service to Others and Self-Care Award, Nominated by Alison Horne

    Why Lisa was nominated: 

    Lisa is a wonderful lady who always greets you with a smile and a "How are you?" She is very helpful and always goes the extra mile to make sure you have what you need. She is, in a sense, the "face" of the CSIU as she gives the very first "good impression" when you walk through the door.

    Michael Pesare

    Michael Pesare
    Communications and Resource Development at Center for Schools and Communities (CSC)
    Rising through Innovative Work Award, Nominated by Sherri Long

    Why Michael was nominated: 

    Michael is always "in the know" for the latest technology and application happenings. I have learned from and value his expertise about digital learning, social media analytics and marketing knowledge. Michael thinks about the "what ifs" and the big picture of how a project, application or a marketing campaign would effect CSC and the CSIU as a whole. His calmness when walking through the presentation process with presenters and his staff training have helped create an awesome experience for all.

    Kara Druckenmiller
    Autistic Support at Lewisburg High School
    Rising through Equity Award, Nominated by Classroom Staff

    Why Kara was nominated: 

    Kara has been a role model for all of her staff. She is an advocate for all of her students, ensuring they receive all the resources needed to attain their goals. Kara is also a very caring teacher who is always available regardless of what is happening in her own life. She not only advocates for her students but also for others who are at a disadvantage and are not being heard. These reasons are why she is looked up to by many, including her staff.

    Katie Cook
    Special Education
    Rising through Service to Others and Self-Care Award, Nominated by Jess Harry

    Why Katie was nominated: 

    In a time where vacant positions are many and staff are few, Katie works tirelessly day in and day out to ensure that all of our programs have sufficient staff. Her communication with substitutes and staff, as well as her relentless efforts, are very much appreciated!

    Vickie Norman
    PIMS Support
    Rising through Service to Others and Self-Care Award, Nominated by Jeff Herrold

    Why Vickie was nominated: 

    Even on the phone, you can tell Vickie always has a smile on her face. She is one of the kindest and most helpful professionals I have ever worked with. Being relatively new to my role, I have leaned on her for technical and procedural advice, and moral support more times than I can possibly remember. I am confident any caller whom she has helped will echo my praise of Vickie when it comes to her willingness to listen, explain, and generally brighten your day.

    Tracey Shoffler
    Alternative Placements
    Rising through Service to Others and Self-Care Award, Nominated by William Simpson

    Why Tracey was nominated: 

    Tracy has worked tirelessly with eToole, the CSIU business office, and Edgenuity staff to ensure a smooth and correct upload of PIMS data. She has demonstrated time and again her commitment to the programs and students she serves.


    Joan Hauck
    Autistic Support Speech Therapy
    Rising through Equity Award, Nominated by Kara Druckenmiller

    Why Joan was nominated: 

    Joan has always gone above and beyond and is willing to grow and adapt how she does speech therapy for each student. She always takes time to collaborate with staff so speech is integrated in the students' programming throughout the school day and carries over to home and the community. Joan is adaptable and willing to learn and teach at the same time. Our students make great progress because of the time she spends making each students' program individualized and focused on them and their future. 

    Patty Soloman
    Computer Services
    Rising through Service to Others and Self-Care Award

    Why Patty was nominated: 

    Patty always goes above and beyond what is asked of her. She is a huge asset to the CSIU Computer Services Financial Information System (FIS) team. She is patient, kind and always willing to go the extra mile to help others, whether it's to provide guidance, answer questions or troubleshoot issues. She is the person you want your team!