LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Shari Solomon-Klebba

Position: Science Teacher
School: Jean Massieu School of the Deaf
School District: Utah School of the Deaf and Blind
City, State: Salt Lake City, UT

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Shari Solomon-Kleba was nominated by an anonymous member of the community.

"I first met Shari when she worked for Girl Scouts of Utah, and I was auditioning to be part of the GSUSA convention flag ceremony team. Right then and there, she was encouraging and a positive light to every girl who wanted to be involved," said the nominator. "Fast forward several months to the week before convention, when the Girl Scout Lego robotics coach quit, and the team fell apart right before they were supposed to showcase their robot to thousands of convention-goers. I hadn’t seen Shari since tryouts, but she stepped in and quickly held the remaining three girls (myself included) together. She also brought in an older girl to mentor our team through the process. Instead of being done when convention was over in October, she found a family who was involved in the First Lego League and agreed to help us learn programming and coding to compete in our competition months later. Shari continued to come and support us on her own time — even on the competition day. Her commitment to us learning was unreal."

Ms. Solomon-Kleba's dedication continues. She now teaches science to middle and high school students at the Jean Massieu School for the Deaf in Salt Lake City. Through her knowledge and love of ASL, she is just as encouraging and nurturing to these students as she was to the robotics team.

"Although I do not attend the school, I’ve seen her spend time talking to students afterschool about assignments or making sure they’re feeling better if they were sick," said the nominator. "Her classroom is amazing, with fun, hands-on science and innovative projects, many which allow the students to think and figure out things so they have more ownership in their education."

"I, too, have been a pupil of Shari’s approach. She now coaches a First Lego robotics team afterschool at the Jean Massieu School, which allows students to figure out things for themselves," said the nominator. "She asked me to be their mentor. So, while I help support them to succeed, much of the communication between the team and me falls to my creativity since I don’t know ASL. Shari believes that learning comes in all forms. I’ve learned some words, but I’ve also talked to the team through charades or written words. We are learning to appreciate what each of us brings to the team, which allows us to learn from one another and bond."

"Shari continues to be involved in Girl Scouting. She has helped start a troop at the school and she has become my troop co-leader," said the nominator. "Again, she uses that same spark of energy to excite us and guide us, but also takes a step back so we become leaders who are committed to making a difference in our community. Shari empowers youth to be engaged in our learning, and that's why she's a LifeChanger."

Comments (7)

Erin Gallimore Posted over a year ago

Curly is an amazing human being! I met her during my student teaching year. She helped shape me into the educator I am today, continually advocating for all students and providing high quality instruction. She also showed me compassion and generousity as a human, not just an educator, during a difficult time in my life. She had touched the lives of so many and I am blessed to be one of them. A well deserving nomination! Thank you Shari for being a positive impact on this world!

Char Corbit Posted over a year ago

I have known Sheri since she was a Senior Gil Scout in Utah. She has always had leadership skills that show up when needed. Sheri is one of the most caring and loving people I know. Sheri has the ability to make science fun and understandable because of her approach to make it about life. I have had the opportunity to watch her engage kids and adults in the love of science. She makes it come to life. I recommend Sheri Solomon- Kleba for the Life-Changer award. She changes deft children's lives every day.

Barbara Jack Posted over a year ago

Shari Solomon Klebba is one of the most inspired, gifted teachers I have ever known. She is full of enthusiasm and excitement every time she discovers something new, since learning and sharing that knowledge, seems to be a part of her own DNA. She inspired me to be the best teacher I could be. We explored many ideas and experiences through the years we worked together. As an art teacher, I also had the privilege of team teaching with her, as we collaborated on many cross-curricular projects, to share the combined creative qualities of art and science with our students. She is a stellar person, always looking on the best side of any situation. I am thrilled that she has been nominated for this prestigious award. Congratulations Shari!

Victoria Gerth Posted over a year ago

I had the opportunity to meet Sheri almost 12 years ago! She has such a kind and open heart and her love for her family and students cannot be measured. Every time that I have been around her or her family you cannot help but feel loved, included and supported! She would be a great candidate for this award!

Tye Lovato Posted over a year ago

Greeting from Kyoto, Japan! I don’t know where to start to say this. Ms. Solomon-Klebba is one of my unique teacher in during my high school year from 2001-2005. During my last senior year, she only one to push me harder to beyond her expectation for me to be on Academic Bowl, eventually I did it and I was able to prove her that everything really can do anytning I want to be. Now I’m traveling around the world. After I see my teacher make this achievement to recognize on this website. However I would want to to say how much I proud of her every moment of it. Be what you are, be what make you! You make me to break my barrier and see what I’m standing at right now, thank you Ms. SOLOMON-KLEBBA!!!!! High five!

Austin Balaich Posted over a year ago

Shari was one of the best science teachers I’ve ever had. Wait, she was the best one actually. She advocated for a culture of learning, and strongly believed in every one of us. Her positive energy and enthusiasm for science is contagious. I always try to visit her whenever I’m in her neighborhood!

Jenny Tankersley Posted over a year ago

Shari is amazing. I've watched her work with youth with special circumstances and she truly loves it. Shari not only puts her heart and soul into teaching, through her position on Girl Scouts of Utah's Gold Award Committee she also mentors girls working towards their Gold Awards, which is the highest award a Girl Scout can earn. Shari is always positive and upbeat, bringing everyone around her up with her sunny attitude. She makes sure everyone is included and able to express themselves. She's the perfect candidate for this award!