Julie Ahern was nominated by Yuri Lopez, the parent of a student. This is the fifth year Ms. Ahern has been nominated for LifeChanger of the Year. She has been nominated each school year from 2013-14 onward.
According to Lopez, no one displays a proven ability to make a beneficial difference in the lives of students more than Ms. Ahern. Lopez' daughter had a rough start in school thanks to bullying in first grade.
"You can imagine how scared I was to send my daughter to school for second grade that fall, but little did we know that we would be graced with an amazing, caring teacher," Lopez said.
Ms. Ahern took the time to make Lopez' daughter feel calm and at peace during the first few days. She introduced her to many amazing programs that will help her grow, and to valuable technology that is becoming a staple of modern life. Within the first two weeks of school, Ms. Ahern sent home a pledge of how each child in the classroom should expect to be respected and respect their peers.
"I honestly cried when I saw how much this meant to a teacher who didn't even know what had happened to my daughter," Lopez said. "My daughter told me every day when she had a chance how amazing and awesome her teacher was. I waited a few months before I let her know that my daughter had been a victim to bullying. Her concern and care for my child will always resonate...She truly enjoys being a teacher and a person who truly loves and cares for each one of her students."
Ms. Ahern has always gone above and beyond to make all students, both past and present, comfortable with taking positive steps towards their future. She takes it upon herself to raise funds for her students' projects at whatever cost. She is always the first teacher to see what she can do to help her students get through life with a more positive mindset.