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1978 Award Winners

1978 Kansas Master Teachers

Dennis L. Ary, USD 437 Washburn Rural

Erma Lang Dow, USD 389 Eureka

Harold Hardy, USD 250 Pittsburg

Robert R. Noble, Pittsburg State University

Milton Senti, USD 382 Pratt

Patricia J. Teel, USD 493 Columbus

Eugene Wiltfong, USD 211 Norton


1978 KMT Program.pdf

This program contains the names of the Master Teacher Nominees for the year listed here.

Biographies below were included in the program for the year listed here and were current as of that time.

Dennis L. Ary

Biology Teacher

Washburn Rural High School

USD 437 Washburn Rural

Dennis L. Ary, a Dodge City native, is biology instructor at Washburn Rural High School in Topeka. He was nominated for the Master Teacher award by the Auburn Washburn National Education Association.

Ary joined the faculty at Washburn Rural in 1964. During summer 1969, he taught science at Capital City High School in Topeka. From 1975-77, he was department of science dean for U.S.D. #437, Topeka.

Receiving the Master Teacher award adds to an award-winning year for Ary. He has already been named 1977-78 Auburn-Washburn School District Teacher of the Year, 1977-78 Auburn-Washburn N.E.A. Teacher of the Year, and was a finalist for the 1978 Kansas Teacher of the Year award.

Ary received his associate of arts degree in 1962 from Dodge City Community College, and both his bachelor of science degree in 1964 and master of science degree in 1971 from Emporia State. Ary was graduated from Greensburg High School in 1960.

Ary is active in many professional and civic organizations, including: Auburn Washburn NEA; Kansas-National Education Association; National Education Association; Kansas Association of Biology Teachers; National Association of Biology Teachers; Kansas Association of Teachers of Science; and the Wanamaker PTA.

"Mr. Ary has taught at Washburn Rural for the past 13 years," wrote a colleague, "and is recognized by the staff, students, and community as an outstanding biology teacher. Students who are not scheduled into Mr. Ary's classes often feel cheated, yet he cannot be assigned all the students."

"Mr. Ary has helped my 16-year-old son so much since he started to high school," wrote one parent. "Besides being an excellent teacher, he is such a good example for teenagers."

Erma Lang Dow

Third Grade Teacher

Random and Midwest Schools

USD 389 Eureka

Erma Lang Dow, a Greensburg native, has been third grade teacher at the Random and Midwest Schools in Eureka for nine years. She was nominated by the Eureka U.S.D. #389 Teacher Association.

Prior to joining the faculty in Eureka's Random and Midwest Schools, Dow taugnt at schools in Greenwood County, Mulberry School in Eureka, and at Piedmont School. She is concluding her 46th year of teaching.

Dow received her three-year state teaching certificate in 1932, life teaching certificate in 1936, and B.S.E. degree in 1967 all from Emporia State University. She completed her B.S.E. degree work by extension, Saturday, and evening classes, beginning the program in 1953.

In addition, Dow has taken six hours of extension work at Pittsburg State University and one hour at Wichita State University.

Over the years, Dow has had a national science grant five semesters. She also received a scholarship from Home National Bank for a summer economics class.

Dow is active in many professional, civic and religious organizations, including: Upper Fall River Mission Society; American Association of University Women; National Education Association; Kansas-National Education Association; Christian Congregational Church; Delta Kappa Gamma; mother advisor for Rainbow Girls; U.S.D. #389 Teachers Association; and County Teachers Association.

"As an elementary teacher," one colleague wrote of Dow, "her calm attitude and patience has enabled her to be highly effective in guiding and encouraging less able students. At the same time, she has an unusual ability to communicate with parents and involve them with their youngsters in the school program."

"All four of my children were fortunate to have her (Dow) for a teacher," wrote one parent, "and she instilled in them a love for reading that remains with them today."

Harold Hardy


Pittsburg High School

USD 250 Pittsburg

Harold Hardy, a Moran native, is principal of Pittsburg High School. He was nominated by the Pittsburg Education Association.

Hardy has been principal at Pittsburg High since 1973. Prior to 1973, he was principal at Pittsburg High and Roosevelt Junior High 1970-73, and principal of Lakeside Elementary and Junior High in Pittsburg. He has been principal and teacher at Forest Park and Westside Elementary Schools in Pittsburg, and teacher at three other elementary schools.

While serving in the U.S. Infantry during World War II, Hardy was awarded the Bronze Star medal for meritorious service, Gold Conduct medal, and was an expert rifleman.

Hardy received his associate of arts degree in 1937 from Iola Community College. He received his B.S.E. degree in 1947 and his M.S.E. degree in 1948 both from Pittsburg State University. He has also done post-graduate work at Pittsburg State, Emporia State University, University of Colorado, and University of Kansas.

During his career, Hardy has served as president for the Kansas Association of Elementary Principals, Sunflower Kiwanis Club of Pittsburg, and the Pittsburg Education Association.

Hardy's professional, civic and religious organization list includes: United School Administrators, Kansas Association of Secondary School Principals, First United Methodist Church, and the Sunflower Kiwanis Club.

There is one quotation that Hardy has tried to live his life by: "What you are is God's gift to you; what you make of yourself is your gift to God."

"He brought to our school system outstanding ability and dedication as a teacher and administrator," one colleague wrote about Hardy. "His accomplishments were not confined to the narrow 'classroom and building' concepts so often found in persons who think only of their 'jobs'."

Dr. Robert R. Noble

Professor of Sociology

Pittsburg State University

Dr. Robert R. Noble, an Oakville, la., native, is professor of sociology at Pittsburg State University. He was nominated by the Pittsburg State University-Kansas Higher Education Association.

He joined the Pittsburg State faculty in 1950. Since 1976, he has also been adjunct professor of administration of justice for Wichita State University. Prior to joining the Pittsburg State faculty, Noble was teaching assistant and instructor of sociology at the University of Nebraska.

Noble, a Yarmouth (la.) High School graduate, received his B.A. degree cum laude in 1942 from Coe College in Cedar Rapids, la. He then served in the U.S. Air Force 1942-45, receiving a Letter of Commendation and the Bronze Star medal.

Following his stint in the Air Force, Noble returned to school. He received his M.A. degree in 1948 and his Ph.D. degree in 1950 both from the University of Nebraska. He has done additional graduate study at the University of Wisconsin.

During his career, Noble has been named to the Midwest edition of Who's Who in America, Who's Who in Child Development Professionals, Outstanding Educators of America, Community Leaders and Noteworthy Americans, and Bibliographie Internationals.

Noble is active in many professional, civic, and religious organizations, including: National Education Association; American Sociological Association; National Council on Children; Kansas Council on Crime and Delinquency; National Council on Family Relations; American Correctional Association; Kiwanis; and United Methodist Church.

"Dr. Noble is first of all a scholar-teacher," wrote one colleague, "who through the years has won the highest respect of his students in the classroom. His teaching has exemplified deep commitment to scholarship, to the welfare of students both educationally and personally, and to unexcelled skill in the classroom and in advisement and counseling."

Milton Senti

Guidance Counselor and English Teacher

Pratt High School

USD 382 Pratt

Milton Senti, an Alida nat1ve, is guidance counselor and English teacher at Pratt High School. He was nominated for the Master Teacher award by the Pratt Education Association.

Senti has been a teacher and guidance counselor in Pratt for 35 years. Since 1938, Senti has been absent from Pratt only four years while he served in the U.S. Army during World War II. He taught two years at Marion High School before going to Pratt.

A Chapman Rural High School graduate, Senti attended Baker University one year. He then attended Emporia State University, receiving his B.S. degree in 1936. He received his M.S. degree in 1941 from the University of Kansas, and has done additional graduate study at Denver University and Fort Hays State University.

During his career, Senti has held numerous positions in his church, local teachers association, and state teachers association. Two of these key positions have been president of the Pratt Education Association and president of the Kansas State Teachers Association.

Senti is involved with many professional, civic and religious organizations, including: Kansas-National Education Association; National Education Association; Kansas Association for Teachers of English; American Personnel and Guidance Association; Pratt County Association for Mental Health; Kansas Council on Crime and Delinquency; Community Concert Association; Pratt Historical Society; and United Methodist Church.

"I first knew Milton as a sophomore in his English class," wrote one former student who is now a Pratt community leader. "He was the kind of teacher who made a student want to do his best. His inspiration gave me a start in a life-long love affair with literature and the English language. In the days before counselors as we know them today, Milton was instrumental in setting up parent-student encounters to discuss things that were important to us. His dedication to the young people with whom he works is the best measure of his qualifications for this award."

Patricia J. Teel

English and French Teacher

Columbus Unified High School

USD 493 Columbus

Patricia J. Teel, a Laurel, Miss., native, teaches English and French at Columbus Unified High School as well as English at Labette Community College in Parsons. She was nominated for the award by the U.S.D. #493 Teachers Association.

She began teaching at Columbus High in 1962, joining the faculty at Labette Community College in 1977. Teel has also taught at Fort Scott Community College, Central School in Columbus, Magee High School in Mississippi, and Marydel! High School in Mississippi.

Teel, a Shady Grove (Laurel, Miss.) High School graduate, attended the Mississippi Women's College (today William Carey College) in Hattiesburg 1937-40. She received her B.A. degree in 1941 from the University of Southern Mississippi and has completed 29 graduate hours at Pittsburg State University.

During her career, Teel has served on the North Central Evaluation team for several southeast Kansas schools, as Kansas-National Education Association English Roundtable chairperson at the state convention, counselor at American Legion Auxiliary Girls State, on the first negotiations team for U.S.D. #493 Teachers Association, as sponsor of the high school pep club, and as sponsor of the National Honor Society.

Teel is active in many professional, civic, and religious organizations, including: National Education Association; Kansas-National Education Association; PEO Sisterhood; Shakespeare Club; American Legion Auxiliary; and United Lutheran Church.

"In my opinion," wrote one colleague, "Mrs. Teel is one of the finest teachers that I have ever had the opportunity to have on my staff. She had a good rapport with teachers, students, and parents. Additionally, she was a teacher who was constantly attempting to improve her teaching skills. She kept abreast with the innovations in her teaching fields through attendance at workshops, meetings, additional graduate hours, etc."

Eugene Wiltfong


Eisenhower Elementary School

USD 211 Norton

Eugene Wiltfong, a Dellvale native, is principal of Eisenhower Elementary School in Norton. He was nominated for the Master Teacher award by the Norton Teachers Association.

WIitfong has been principal at Eisenhower Elementary School since 1960. From 1966-70, he was assistant superintendent of Norton Unified Schools. Prior to that, he taught in Norton schools, at Lenora Grade School, and at the Norton County Rural School.

From 1944-46, Wiltfong served in the U.S. Army in World War II. He received a good conduct medal and other citations during those years.

A Lenora High School graduate, WIitfong received his B.S.E. degree In 1960 and his M.S. degree In 1963 both from Fort Hays State University. He has additional college credits from Dodge City Community College, Kansas State University, and the University of Kansas.

Wiltfong was a 1967 nominee for the Master Teacher of Norton County Teachers Association. He also received the 25-year Teacher Service award In 1973 from the University of Kansas.

WIitfong is active in several professional, civic, and religious organizations. including: Kansas Elementary Principals Association; United School Administrators of Kansas; Norton County Saddle Club; and United Methodist Church of Norton.

"In my opinion," wrote one colleague, "Gene Wiltfong is not only an excellent principal, but a very fine person. He is loyal, cooperative, and dedicated to education and the pupils he serves. He has a very fine rapport with the pupils, their parents, and his teachers. Mr. Wiltfong is willing to give the time and effort that is necessary to be an effective and exceptional educator."

One elementary student simply wrote: "He helps us."