GREAT FALLS, Mont. — School bus drivers from across the state were honored here earlier this month for their professionalism and longevity in their job.
Several awards were given out at the annual Montana Association for Pupil Transportation (MAPT) Conference, which was held from June 15 to 17.
The six Years of Service awards went to:
• John Riley, 48 years, Geyser Public Schools
• Judy Vanluchene, 40 years, Huntley Project Schools, Worden
• Harvey Thompson, 34 years, Geyser Public Schools
• Frank Fairbanks, 34 years, Geraldine Schools
• Lynn Thompson, 33 years, Geyser Public Schools
• Michael Qunell, 30 years, Geraldine Schools
The three "You Make a Difference" awards were presented by the Montana Office of Public Instruction to:
• Dennis Parman, deputy superintendent for Montana Office of Public Instruction
• Gary Henrich, Butte School District
• Robert Sandoval, Butte School District
Montana Standard reports that Henrich, a bus driver for nine years, made the most-requested list of drivers for long trips because of his “fun, professional and safe driving standards,” said Gail Clark, the district transportation dispatcher for Butte School District.
Additionally, school secretary and substitute bus driver Joyce Schrock, who works for Greenfield School District No. 75 in Fairfield, was recognized with the MAPT Transportation Person of the Year award.
Tammy Edwards, a bus driver for Corvallis School District and the secretary/treasurer for MAPT, was named Montana Highway Patrol Driver of the Year.
Meanwhile, Kathy Nugent, a bus aide for Butte School District, was recognized with the Montana Highway Patrol Bus Aide of the Year award.
Clark, who nominated Nugent for the award, said that Nugent “follows the rules and guidelines that are established with the district but also understands the flexibility and understanding of each situation that arises,” according to Montana Standard.