Church workers from across the Nebraska District gathered in Seward for the 2023 Great Plains Lutheran Educators Conference, and one of the highlights of the event was presenting awards to some of our District’s outstanding educators. Nominees must be actively serving as a full-time employee of an LCMS entity. The next awards will be given in fall of 2024 at the All Professional Church Workers’ Conference.

2023 educator awardsEarly Childhood Educator of the Year: Kelsey Schnoor, Director, St. John Early Learning Center, Battle Creek
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14)

Elementary Teacher of the Year: Sandy Bangert, Kindergarten Teacher, Messiah, Lincoln
“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)

Middle/High School Teacher of the Year: Phil Carlson, Science teacher, Lincoln High Northeast, Norfolk
“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.” (3 John 3:4)

Administrator of the Year: Nathan Domsch, Principal, Concordia Academy, Omaha
“Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:43-45)

Parish Worker of the Year: Brady Laib, Director of Christian Education, First, Papillion
“Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:58)

Shepherd of the Year: Rev. Jim DeLoach, Senior Pastor at Zion, Kearney
“So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.” Ephesians 4:11-12