West Essex Staff Members win State-Wide Awards

By Chase Morrone, News Editor

Three West Essex educators and staff members earned high praise from the school and the state this spring. Athletic Department Director Secretary Marion McGuinness received the Directors of Athletics Association of New Jersey’s Administrative Assistant Award in March. Physical Education teacher Toni-Anne Cavallo-Samuels and Student Assistance Counselor Anthony Emering received the Governor’s Educator of the Year and Education Services Professional of the Year, respectively, at the school’s yearly teacher award ceremonies Feb. 4. .

Ms. Cavallo, who teaches senior Phys Ed and Health classes, said she was incredibly surprised by the honor. “It is such an honor because at West Essex, I’m surrounded by such amazing educators on daily basis,” she said. “To be nominated by my peers as an alumni makes it even more special.”

“West Essex is is a wonderful institution, and it’s always nice to feel like you’re making a difference in any possible way,” Mr. Emering said. “Being recognized by talented peers, when reality there are many more deserving people, makes it both embarrassing and an honor to be recognized as part of a team.” Mr. Emering also said that he is grateful to students and parents who trust the Student Assistance program, and is glad to be seen as the “good guy” in most situations.

“I come to work every day, and it’s nice now and then to get some recognition,” said Ms. McGuinness, who has been working at West Essex for 18 years. “There are many other secretaries here who work very hard.” She said she is very grateful to her associates for taking the time to nominate and acknowledge her.