School Bell Award Winners
04/17/2019 02:51 PM

Laredo Chamber Announces School Bell Award Winners

               The Education Committee of the Laredo Chamber of Commerce is ready once again to ring the school bell for local outstanding teachers.  “And we’ll do it with class,” states Humberto “Tito” Gonzalez, Jr., P.E. M.B.A., Chairman of the committee, as he announced the winners of this year’s School Bell Award competition. In making the announcement, Gonzalez explained that the process of selection is not an easy one, given the number and quality of entries.  “Yet, as competitive as this competition has become,” he added, “it’s part of this committee’s mission to recognize educators that excel – particularly those whose accomplishments are recognized by their peers.”

Gonzalez explained that following a thorough review of the scores of applications submitted, the members of the committee selected the top rankings in eleven different categories. A special recognition – the School Bell Award – will be presented to the winners at a ceremony to be held on May 9, 2019, at the Student Center of Texas A&M International University.

The School Bell Award winners for 2019 are:


Nancy Torres                                      M.S. Ryan Elementary School                                        LISD

Rebecca Laurel                                   Col. Santos Benavides Elementary School                    UISD

Yvette Gage-Canales                         United Day School                                                           PRIVATE


Martha S. Trevino                              L.J. Christen Middle School                                            LISD

Cynthia A. Guerra                                             Antonio Gonzalez Middle School                                  UISD


John R. Reimund                               Vidal M. Trevino School of Comm. & Fine Arts             LISD

Lucy K. Gutierrez                               Cherish Center                                                                 UISD

Hector Macias                                   St. Augustine High School                                              PRIVATE               


Jovita Luna                                         Harmony School of Excellence                                       CHARTER


               Maribel J. Mitsui                               Laredo College, Mathematics Instructor


Linda V. Villarreal                              Texas A&M Int. University, Kinesiology Instructor

Recipients of the School Bell Award will also receive a special gift from Family Chevrolet, a local auto dealership that has embraced the event wholeheartedly over the years.  In addition, Killam Development, another local firm, has agreed this year to also support winners with a special reward.  Both local businesses stress their support for education and their commitment to making sure that local educators realize that the business community is firmly behind them.  Hosting the School Bell Award ceremony/reception along with the Laredo Chamber, Family Chevrolet and Killam Development will be the College of Education of Texas A&M International University.  Under the guidance of Dr. James G. O’Meara, TAMIU’s College of Education continues its commitment to excellence in the educational field.  Dr. O’Meara forms part of the Chamber’s Education Committee along with other educators and members of the business community.

               The School Bell Award is the brainchild of two former Laredo Chamber of Commerce Education Committee members -- Candy Hein, former V.P. for Institutional Advancement at TAMIU, and Elia Gonzalez, a telecommunications executive.  Hein and Gonzalez, in 1992, decided that the Laredo Chamber should find a way to recognize local exemplary teachers.  With the full support of the Chamber’s Board of Directors, the two organized a plan to raise funds and to institute the first awards program.  The School Bell recognition was born.  Originally, the School Bell Awards were presented at regular monthly Chamber board meetings.  In 2001, the Chamber’s Education Committee took the initiative to create the School Bell’s own event.  In 2005, Paul Young, a local auto dealer, decided to grow the event further and instituted a program for monetary reward for each of the honorees. This has now been complemented by Killam Development.

               Over the years, the Laredo Chamber has made education one of its priorities -- the leadership of the Chamber being cognizant that a trained workforce is key to economic development.  Aside from the annual recognition event for teachers, throughout the year the Laredo Chamber Education Committee supports and actively participates in school-related activities, e.g., support for the anti-bullying campaign and this year kicked off the “Spirit of Laredo” Scholarship Competition for graduating students. In addition, the Chamber fosters leadership skills training for young adults through programs such as the Youth Leadership Laredo

A large section of the seating area at the event is reserved for School Bell recipients and their guests. Tickets will be available in a limited capacity for other interested parties. For information regarding the event contact the Laredo Chamber of Commerce at (956) 722-9895.

About the Chamber

Founded in 1915, the Laredo Chamber of Commerce is Laredo’s and Webb County’s longest running business organization.  Headquartered at 2310 San Bernardo Ave. since 1974, the Laredo Chamber has

been an advocate for the local business community for over a century.  With 650 members representative of every industry in the community, the Laredo Chamber is accredited with 5 stars by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.  Only 200 chambers out of 7000 across the country are accredited by this organization.

Laredo Chamber of Commerce
Powered By CC-Assist.NET