LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Ricardo Espinoza

Position: Superintendent
School: La Moille High School
School District: La Moille CUSD 303
City, State: LaMoille, IL

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Dr. Ricardo Espinoza was nominated by a colleague who wishes to remain anonymous.

Dr. Espinoza is a man of integrity, intelligence, and empathy. In his leadership of La Moille CUSD 303, students and faculty have witnessed his dedication to doing what is right and what is best for everyone.

Whether it's pulling his district together to embrace the idea of STEM, or working to instill a culture of caring, Dr. Espinoza leads his district in the right direction. His students experience an openness that supports and values healthy choices, while holding back judgment and providing assistance to those who need support. He is a leader who is approachable, open-minded, and not afraid to put in the time it takes to establish a solid foundation.

Dr. Espinoza has upgraded curriculum to infuse STEM initiatives, as well as enhancing that concept to include STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math). He supports choices that students make in their pursuit of career exploration, and encourages his teachers to push forward with professional development. His support is instrumental in establishing events like a county wide STEAM conference, participation and support of Career Expos, as well as the unwavering promotion of Career Exploration via participation in the area's Career Center.

In support of his students, his initiatives are well rounded and rooted in both the social/emotional as well as curricular. In leading a small school district with limited resources, he has emphasized the human element of the students and their development. Whether it's making home visits to ascertain student situations, or visiting students at the hospital, Dr. Espinoza transcends traditional boundaries, so that students know him and his willingness to help them. For students to know him on a personal level and have no apprehension about approaching him, speaks volumes.

"In short, Dr. Espinoza can be given accolades for his intelligence and his accomplishments, but  his greatest achievement is being an excellent human being, worthy of emulation," the nominator said. "He is a great role model, to students and faculty alike"