LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Mattie Smith

Position: Pre-K Paraprofessional
School: Shady Grove Elementary
School District: Ouachita Parish School Board
City, State: Monroe, LA

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Music that Describes Mattie


Mattie Smith was nominated by her daughter, LaToya Smith.

Mattie Smith portrays the same character daily, no matter who is in her presence. She makes a beneficial difference in the lives of not only students, but everyone she meets. She guides them with wisdom and instills moral character within them. Mattie uplifts with encouraging words, gives recognition to those who think their actions go unnoticed, and provides rewards and tokens of appreciation.

Mattie has a strong ability of adding positivity to the school's atmosphere with her upbeat personality, positive spirit, and magnificent level of creativity. She paints the hallways with her spirit, but she also brings color to the school by decorating the walls and school boards, which brings students and employees a sense of school pride. She shows leadership within her school district by attending monthly meetings at the Ouachita Parish Media Center to stay informed on things happening withing the school and school system.

"My mom has a record of excellent performance at a professional level with anyone that has ever evaluated her interaction with her students, as well as her peers," said LaToya. "She goes beyond what is expected of her within her work environment."

Mattie's commitment to producing a nurturing atmosphere is proven in the amount of years that she has worked at Shady Grove Elementary. Even before becoming an employee at Shady Grove, she worked with children in the neighborhood by helping them with their homework and bringing positivity to their lives whenever she saw them doing something that she felt was good and would normally go without recognition.

"I don't brag on Mattie Smith because she is my mother. I speak highly of her because in today's world, she is a rare jewel," said LaToya. "A lot of things in life are often overlooked because they happen involuntarily. Due to this, people, especially children, don't learn that often times, the simple things that you do or say can have the greatest impacts in life. Mattie Smith finds a way to shed a light on these things. I'm so thankful that she does because it's the Mattie Smiths in this world that speak to our moral and ethical standards and encourage us to let it shine."



Comments (12)


Mary Crandall Posted 8 months ago

As one of the PreK coordinators in the school system that employs Mattie, I can honestly say that she has been a valuable asset to our program! Over the years, I have see her adjust to unexpected changes in the classroom where she works as a para while at the same time maintaining a positive attitude about what was taking place. As for the 4 year olds in this classroom, she often provides the love and compassion that is needed while mom is at home. I highly recommend Mattie Smith for your consideration as Life Changer of the Year!

Shemicka Wade Posted 9 months ago

Mattie is a very caring and loving person. We meet as co-workers and now have a very special bond as friends. She is always willing to lend a helping hand. She keeps a positive attitude and spread love wherever she goes. She loves working with children. My kids beg to go visit her every weekend. She's so sweet, nurturing, and patient with kids. I thank God for her. She is a blessing to all.

Cathy Agan Posted 9 months ago

Mattie Smith is so enthusiastic and kind. She has a great heart and is dedicated to her job. When I visit her Pre-K class, she is always so welcoming!

Lara Jopling Posted 9 months ago

Since I first started at Shady Grove Mattie Smith has been a caring and supportive coworker to me. She does so much behind the scenes and you wouldn’t know it unless you asked! She isn’t boastful about everything she does to go above and beyond not only for her classroom but for the entire school. I miss being on the same hall as her and seeing her smile every morning! I’m so glad she is receiving this deserved honor!

Elizabeth Sievers Posted 9 months ago

I have taken longer than I wanted to leave a comment because I wanted to say just the right thing. Words mean a great deal and are somewhat difficult for me in emotional situations. Mattie Smith help make me into a caring, smarter working, and more attuned teacher. For three years she nudged me in the best direction when I needed guidance. We worked together in the same room with PreK students and it is highly stressful in addition to being exciting and fun. During this time I was learning what kind of teacher I was going to be instead of what kind of teacher I thought I should be. Preconceived notions of what goes into a PreK room floated in this first year teacher’s brain. Mattie Smith gave advice, support, kindness, a kick in the pants, and most of all I learned how to see students thru her eyes. Firm and supportive, loving and demonstrative, strong and flexible...these are the qualities that she exhibits to her students. I know that this honor is greatly deserved and I know she will be a voice for her students even after they leave her care.

Chance Smith Posted 9 months ago

My mom taught me to never let a woman go to sleep mad, over the years I’ve done that, but I fear I’ve lost that touch. When i was younger my mom always taught me to hold the door open, show your manners, thats become apart of me today, and that’s all because of her. My mom told me it’s not always about the things that cost the most, but what you put behind it that would make a girl fall in love with you. She taught me to be genuine. My mom taught me no matter what, never lie to her, I love my mom with all my heart, so one thing i never did was lie. She taught me to be honest to those I care about. My mom taught me to find the good in people and let them know they have it in them. She taught me how to seek potential. My mom told me when someone wants space, give it to them. She taught me how to be patient. Mama you taught me that just because I see something one way, that’s not the only way it can be.. you taught me to not be selfish. You taught me to never question where I’m at in life, I’ve done this a couple times. you never got upset, you always reminded me that God has a reason for it all. I’ve always wondered how you stayed so calm but even in times you yelled i got the message, your voice was nasty at me but your intention was pure, I want to thank you for not just putting up with me, but loving me and I only hope to make an impact on my child the same way you did for me. My mom not only gave birth to me, she gave me a chance to make it through life’s toughest times...i remember my teachings when i feel tested...Thank you ??

Jennifer Jones Posted 9 months ago

Congratulations classmate

Dvawn Maza Posted 9 months ago

I am one of Mattie's co-workers, but more importantly close friend. Mattie always has an upbeat personality and is always encouraging to our students. She gives tirelessly to our school with her many talents. Every event that we have, she decorates extravagantly for it. I have known Mattie for many year, and I can honestly say that I have never heard her complain or ever have a discouraging word. She is my encouragement. She is one of my many blessings God has given me at Shady Grove Elementary!

Brenda Gordon Posted 9 months ago

Mattie Smith has been a Long Time Friend For Many Years Now. She Is A God Fearing, Self-Motivative, High-Spirited, Smart, Creative, and Most Of All Selfish Individual. I Can Go On and On about My Friend/Sis but I am almost sure most of you already know that she is an awesome person, Mrs. Mattie Lewis Smith.

Rokeya Myles Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Mattie Smith is definitely a life changer on all levels. She helps people from the heart and doesn't mind doing it. She is really your go to person because she can see things before you see it. She is a all around person and takes initiative on everything that she does which is really great. I nominate her for the Life Changer of the Year because she certainly deserves this prestigious award for all of the smiles that she puts on people's face. She can turn a negative in a positive very quickly with children and adults. I have only known her for a few years and she has definitely been a positive influence in my life.

RubyBlade Posted 9 months ago

Mattie Smith, is a woman genuine compassion and love for the elderly. She showed love to my late mother by doctor no whatever she could for her even if was a conversation, prayer, her time and love. My mother loved and respected Mattie, for that I love her unconditionally.

Cheryl Hopkins Posted 9 months ago

My cousin Mattie is a phenomenal woman who is all about family and helping other’s. Mrs. Smith attributes goes far and beyond. When I think about a life changer they walk the walk, and have action behind it. Mrs. Smith give back in her community and always willing to meet people where they are. I’ve come to know a selfless person who is God fearing and giving of herself without complaining. A woman who does life changing things are seasoned a willing to share their passion and talents. This women we speak of goes over and beyond the call of duty, just to make other’s smile and makes a impact on everyone she meets. It is very rare, you meet a diamond who is always wants to see people shine around her not behind. Family is everything to Mrs. Smith and she loves everyone just the same. Mrs. Smith is a wonderful woman with a great big heart along with compassionate about what she does. She lives by those morals and values instilled in her and sets the bar high for anyone trying to follow. Thank you, for sharing your gifts with us all and doing it all out of love, and not for show. You couldn’t have pick a more deserving woman to be nominated.