School Board member Jane Smith in Yucaipa-Calimesa and retired board member Donna West in Redlands were the recipients this year of the San Bernardino County Distinguished Service Award.
They were honored at the San Bernardino County School Boards Association’s spring meeting at the Sierra Lakes Golf Club. They are the 36th and 37th recipients of the award.
For the past 22 years, the countywide Distinguished Service Award has celebrated exceptional and distinguished service. The purpose of the award is to recognize dedication and leadership on behalf of public education in the county. Up to two recipients may be selected annually.
For Smith, she has devoted her life to educational issues across the county. She began her county career in the Fontana Unified School District in 1979 as a middle school reading teacher. She loved teaching, but her depth of knowledge, service-minded spirit, and caring attitude for students and colleagues opened doors for leadership positions in Fontana.
She has served as a superintendent in Fontana, an assistant superintendent for San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools, as well as been a board member for the Yucaipa-Calimesa Joint Unified School District since 2008.
The Distinguished Service Award competition is co-sponsored by the San Bernardino County School Boards Association (SBCSBA), the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools, the San Bernardino County Committee on School District Organization, and the Fifth District PTA.