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Classified Employees of the Year
Classified Employees of the Year
Posted on 02/20/2019

The Puyallup School District has outstanding, talented, and dedicated employees across the district. Every year during the month of December staff send in nominations for Classified Employee of the Year. The honor is awarded to a classified employee from each region. A committee reviews each nomination looking for specific attributes. Attributes for consideration include:

·       Outstanding contribution to student success

·       Professional leadership qualities

·       Number of devoted years, hours, or types of service

·       What makes this classified employee stand out

In a surprise announcement, Superintendent Dr. Yeomans and administrators announced the award recipients in front of their peers and family. On Tuesday, February 19 at a regularly scheduled school board meeting, honorees were recognized in front of the Board of Directors. After congratulating the three recipients and thanking them for their outstanding work, School Board President Chris Ihrig proclaimed March 11 – 15, 2019 as Classified School Employees Week to recognize all the dedicated classified employees in the district. Click here to view the proclamation.

Congratulations to the 2018-19 Classified Employee of the Year recipients, Puyallup High School Office Manager Michele Ayers, Pope Elementary Custodian Sara Moran, and Puyallup School District Senior Technician Michael Sanders.


Sara Moran received a standing ovation from her colleagues at Pope Elementary when her name was announced as Classified Employee of the Year. Moran has been a custodian for the Puyallup School District for five years. Staff at Pope Elementary feel fortunate she has spent the last three years at their building where she has created positive relationships with students and teachers. Moran often describes the staff at Pope as “heSara tutoring first graderr family.”

Three times a week before her shift begins, Moran arrives early at Pope. She spends the time tutoring in a first grade classroom. She helps students with reading and spelling, assisting in their academic success. Wearing a big smile on her face, Moran stated, “I just love these kids.”

Her positive attitude and high energy are described as contagious. Moran is known for her “go-getter” attitude, always going above and beyond to help others.

“Sara’s commitment to excellence in her job, love for students and staff, and her passion for volunteering makes Sara stand out.”

 Principal of Pope Elementary Krista Bates


Michele Ayers is described as the heart of the office and school. She is professional, friendly, and helpful to students, staff, and parents who walk into the office at Puyallup High School. Ayers is the first one to arrive to school each day, making suMichelle with flowersre the building and classrooms are ready and welcoming for the students and staff.

Ayers began her career in the Puyallup School District 18 years ago. She started her career October 2001 at Puyallup High School as the administrative secretary. In September of 2007 she accepted her current position of office manager. Ayers stated, “I work with a great team, we make it fun in a high paced, sometimes stressful job.”

“Michele is able to successfully maintain progress on long-term goals and future events while simultaneously handling the daily barrage of the needs in a busy high school front office. She does it all with a friendly and helpful demeanor.”

Principal of Puyallup High School Dave Sunich

When Ayers is not working, she enjoys spending time with her eight grandchildren or spending time outdoors; at the beach, hunting and fishing, boating, or tearing it up on her quad.

Michael Sanders
has worked in the district’s technology department for over seven years. As a senior technician, he is instrumental in maintaining the district’s student and staff data network, radio communication systems, enterprise telephone System, voicemail, and 911 call systems. Sanders at desk smiling

Sanders has supported and led numerous capital and EdTec projects. All the technical upgrade projects led by Sanders have been completed on time and under budget. He is a valuable member of the communication systems design team for the five new schools, as well as having a lead role during the installation phase.

Sanders is known for consistently striving to improve his technical knowledge through research, study, certifications, and education.

“I have received many positive accolades from district staff regarding his calm and friendly demeanor while solving complicated technical issues. Michael is an excellent team member and is always ready to lend a hand or offer suggestions.” 
Network Telecom Engineer III Dennis Wright.

Congratulations again to this year’s Classified Employee of the Year recipients Sara Moran, Michele Ayers and Michael Sanders.

Anne Martin