It’s hard to know what to say just because Ms. Biller has taught me so much in my 3 years of being in her class at Damonte Ranch High School. I’ve grown so much from my first day to my last. But the one thing that Ms. Biller gave me that I will take anywhere I go is the ability to persevere. The strength to take a struggle and work through it. It is far too easy to give up, and Ms. Biller has expertly demonstrated that no one will ever go anywhere if they succumb to that desire. She has shown me just how important it is to try, and fail, and try again. Being in love with a craft means that in order to learn it, you have to be willing to live through every up and down, and for giving me this priceless gift, I know I’ll forever be grateful.
Meeting and working with Pilar has been one of the bright points of light in my life. I met Pilar through the Nevada State Teacher of the Year (STOY) program. I was the 2016 STOY and reached out to her once she attained the title. Since she became our state representative, we have sought to create a state chapter for the National Network of State Teachers of the Year. Despite an extensive list of responsibilities, she helped spearhead the beginnings of this group of professionals in the state and currently holds the office of Vice President. In addition to her roles as STOY for Nevada and VP for NVSTOY, she has also reached out and worked with Teachers Against Child Detention and recently traveled to El Paso to add her voice to this growing problem on the border of the United States. She has been instrumental in guiding NVSTOY as well as her youth program at Damonte Ranch High School in Reno. She is a powerful force for good in the state, her community and in the educational community of the country. It is a privilege to be her colleague and she is deserving of every bit of recognition she gets for changing lives for the better.
I attended Damonte Ranch High from 2013-2017, and the time that I had with Ms. Biller remains the most important time of my life. What Ms. Biller taught my class and I during the last two years of my high school experience proves more helpful to me now in my post secondary education than any other curriculum. I knew I wanted to be an animator/filmmaker for a long while, but didn’t have any structure of how to get skills that would propel me forward. Ms. Biller gave us a clear foundation with a structure and a support system worthy of any college art program. She sacrifices a tremendous amount of her personal time developing detailed rubrics that produce a clear trajectory of improvement. While in her class, I achieved more through my art which as a consequence led me from Southern California to Carnegie Hall in Manhattan. In my senior year I had a new ambition to apply to an extremely competitive animation school in Toronto called “Sheridan College” in my senior year. I was planning to take the final high school art class A.P art, but soon realized that the specific curriculum taught in that class wasn’t conducive for creating a college portfolio. Despite the district’s requirements, Ms. Biller fought for me to take a lower art class, that would help me create the art required for the portfolio. As a result of this personable advocacy, I was eventually accepted into that top college. Ms. Biller to this day stands as the most personal and greatest teacher I have ever had because of the personable relationship with every student, and the large skill set I gained from her class.
Ms. Biller and her students would be very worthy recipients of this award. Please consider all the good this teacher does, not only for her students, but also through her students, out in the community. It's great when an organization is able to recognize and support educators, and by doing so, further their causes and promote their students. Pilar and her students would turn this award into so much more down the road. The positive outcomes would influence their school now and reach far beyond, even into future generations of students and to the wider community. Who knew one generous prize could go so far? Award Ms. Biller this award and watch the ripple effects produce life-changing results.
Pilar is an extraordinary colleague. Her reach extends beyond her school and district. On several occasions, Pilar and I have collaborated on policy and advocacy issues. Her attention to detail and commitment to the improvement of educational outcomes for all students is inspiring. I highly recommend Pilar for this amazing recognition.
I am so thankful to have met Pilar in variety of professional development opportunities. She is a lifelong learner who is committed to improving her teaching skills so that she can reach every student every day. I am so impressed by her thoughtful and reflective practices and blown away by the carefully planned, student-centered, and dynamic instruction she's able to offer her students. I appreciate that she is incredibly engaged learner who reflects upon the impacts of each element of instruction on her students and challenges others to think critically about how our curriculum impacts our students. Whenever I have an opportunity to work with her on planning for instruction she challenges me to think outside the box and although we have different content areas I can learn a great deal about my own instruction by conversations with her about her instruction. She is an inspirational teacher and a life-changer not only for the students she works with but also the teachers she collaborates with in a variety of settings, even outside her school site.
I met Pilar through the Nevada Teachers of the Year. She has spent hours advocating for all the students in Nevada and beyond in a quiet, kind and strong way. She is so positive in her beliefs in education and the changes that should be made and believes in the worth of all children. Pilar is a true example of what we hope all teachers should be.
I was in Ms. Biller’s art class for my junior and senior in high school. I had just moved from California to Nevada and was nervous about being in a new school. Being in Ms. Biller’s class made me feel comfortable and more at ease. Also I didn’t think I could improve more in my art skills but she really helped me see different perspectives of art, widen my art range, and go into detail with my planning of my artwork. I still use these skills today when creating new art pieces and I’m really grateful that I had such an amazing teacher like Ms. Biller’s to teach me.
Ms. Biller has been an amazing art teacher this year. I’ve always been artistic but until this year I never really figured it out, she’s shown me so many amazing techniques that have really helped me out. Overall I think she’s a great teacher. I’m so glade that I had her this year for my first year in high school!
Ms. Biller is not only an amazing teacher, but she is an inspiration to other teacher, as well. I have been on multiple committees with Ms. Biller, and she always contributes thoughtful insights and ideas that are not always obvious considerations. She sacrifices a massive amount of her personal time in order to be involved on multiple state committees, and her voice is on that puts the needs of students first.