LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Denisse Ochoa

Position: Librarian
School: PSJA North Early College High School
School District: Pharr San Juan Alamo ISD
City, State: Pharr, TX

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Music that Describes Denisse

Denisse Ochoa was nominated by an anonymous colleague.

Mrs. Ochoa is one of four librarian leaders in her district who have worked laboriously during a new type of setting in education (COVID-19). She has educated many stakeholders on developing campus-based gardens as a project for sustainability.  She is an EcoRise ambassador, and she presents this concept to many stakeholders, including fellow librarians and members of the Texas Library Association District 4. Mrs. Ochoa uses this concept to grow indoor gardens in the middle of her high school library.  Her tips and expertise in gardening are instrumental for those who might not be able to venture out in public due to this time of distress. She truly has a green thumb.

Mrs. Ochoa is skillful with innovative ideas in literacy and research skills, and is able to present concepts in both English and Spanish. The summer projects that she designs develop a great educational climate, even if the concepts are in a virtual setting.  She attempts to find the right book for the right individual as she promotes Manga, Anime and Graphic Novels for students to read during the summer. She and her colleagues design motivational TikTok videos and BookTalks, and they promote art contests by finding Avatar, Bitmojis or other methods that encourage students to participate with the summer activities.

Mrs. Ochoa applies for grants that will help her obtain furniture to mimic a home environment in the library.  She not only teaches about the life cycle of a butterfly, but has students see the entire life cycle by having a netted tent with the cocoons. Eventually, the cocoons hatch into butterflies that are released to nature when the cycle is complete.

Mrs. Ochoa reaches out to the community and collaborates with them on gifts to reward students for their accomplishments.  She is truly an educator who empowers students to get the best education possible.  Mrs. Ochoa is an educator, horticulturist, scientist, librarian, Library Tech Squad leader, Google Certified, and much, much more.  She is truly a LifeChanger!

Comments (44)

Emmanuel Gonzalez Posted 4 months ago

Denisse is a wonderful friend and colleague. It was an honor to work by her side along with an incredible group of staff that went above and beyond for nineteen years In the city of San Juan, Texas. God bless you this honor, and regardless of the outcome, you’re already a winner. ??

Mary Rios Posted 4 months ago

She's extraordinary!

Esther Carrillo Posted 4 months ago

Denise is a very caring person and it shows on how she cares for her students.

Nayeli Hack Posted 4 months ago

Mrs. Ochoa is a wonderful and caring librarian who loves sharing her love for reading with everyone. She is constantly looking for new ways to keep people engaged and being a librarian is not only her profession, but her calling. We love you Mrs. Ochoa :)

Erikah Posted 4 months ago


Guillermo Cienfuegos Posted 4 months ago

Congratulations Mrs Ochoa

Nadia Aguirre Posted 4 months ago

Ms Ochoa always goes above and beyond for her students and colleagues. Her positive attitude and bubbly personality is contagious and we are blessed to have her in our campus!

Ms. Puente Posted 4 months ago

I've been blessed to have the opportunity and sit front row watching and learning from what Mrs. Ochoa brings and shares with the world. She's a leader whom is optimistic, crafty,, innovator, qualified professional that reinvents herself by staying current and update with the newest trends of education and technology. As humble as Mrs. Ochoa is, she is also a force to be reckoned with when she goes after what she believes in and aspires to do for her students. Don't let this tiny gal fool you, as her humble upbringing taught her the best competitor is yourself and the possiblities are always many so one should never stop learning and going after them!

Adriana Posted 4 months ago

Love it

Vanessa Ayala Posted 4 months ago

Great job, Denisse! You are making PSJA proud!!! Best of luck!

Mary Villarreal Posted 4 months ago

Mrs. Ochoa is not only an amazing librarian for her students but a reliable resource for teachers and strong voice for the community. She keeps everyone informed and up to date with skills needed and is very knowledgeable in all aspects. Whether it be in the library or classroom she makes learning fun. I can’t think of a more deserving individual. I look forward to all that she will accomplish in her career!

SANDRA MADRIGAL Posted 4 months ago


Delilah Farias Posted 4 months ago

Mrs. Ochoa has worked to transform our school library into a welcoming environment where students feel at ease when asking questions. She truly is an asset in our school’s community. During these trying times, she has demonstrated patience in teaching our team about the multiple aspects of Google Classroom and Google Sites to prepare for distance learning.

Nadia Farhat Posted 4 months ago

I’ve known Denise for over 20 years!! And I’ve always admired her passion and dedication!! ??????

Oscar Posted 4 months ago

You're the best, thank you for everything you do for our children.

Jorge Palacios Posted 4 months ago

Congratulations! We are very proud of the work you for our district. Your hard work and dedication to our students, staff and district is greatly appreciated.

Talina Morgan Posted 4 months ago

I’ve known Denisse for almost 2 decades now and have nothing but great things to say. She is a genuinely giving, caring, positive attitude, always smiling, down to earth type of person. I am not surprised she got nominated for this award because she is the type to put all her heart and soul into what she she loves doing. The enthusiasm she radiates in her activities makes many gravitate towards her and submerge themselves into the world of learning. I second the nomination and know there is no one more deserving of this award than Mrs. Ochoa.

Natalie Ochoa Posted 4 months ago

I hope you win!!

Valerie Santos Posted 4 months ago

Well deserved Mrs. Ochoa. She’s a great empowering role model for PSJA North. Best of luck!

Rachel Alvarez Posted 4 months ago

I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with Ms. Denisse Ochoa. She truly transformed our school library into a thriving and welcoming place. She constantly came up with innovative ideas to engage our students. She served as my mentor while I completed my librarian practicum hours, and she was such an inspiring role model! She is definitely a deserving nominee for this honor!

Christine Hick Posted 4 months ago

Mrs Ochoa is the always a go getter and always seeking avenues to enrich the lives of the people around her especially her students who she loves.

Julianna Posted 4 months ago

Way to go!!!

Whitman Bodden Posted 4 months ago

Mrs. Ochoa is a Passionate educator! We is such a blessing to all who crosses her path.

Irma Bocanegra Posted 4 months ago


Irma Bocanegra Posted 4 months ago

Keep working & giving your best! You are always proficient in everything you set your mind to do.?Congratulations?

Asia Jimenez Posted 4 months ago

Congratulations Denisse! ????

Margaret Posted 4 months ago

Amazing! Your hard work and dedication is being recognized.

Brenda Hinojosa Posted 4 months ago

Congrats!! I admire your dedication and your love for books.

Laura Perez Posted 4 months ago

Good luck Denisse! You Rock continue to make a difference!

Barney Rangel Posted 4 months ago

Life changer.

Ruby Lopez Posted 4 months ago

Congratulations on your nomination! You deserve this for all that you do for teachers and students.

Melissa Posted 4 months ago

Best librarians!!! Always going over & beyond for students, staff, parents & peers. Good luck Denisse!??????????

Selina Huerta Posted 4 months ago

Ms. Ochoa is a true life changer. She goes above and beyond to get what her students need to ensure they have an equitable education. Whether it’s basic needs such as food or clothing or technology devices for coding, she paves the way through grants and community support. She changes and inspires lives.

Linda Soto Posted 4 months ago

Thank you for everything you do for our students and community.

Chelsea Zavala Posted 4 months ago

Wonderful woman and Liberian.

Natalie Ochoa Posted 4 months ago

I hope you win!!

Renee Ochoa Posted 4 months ago

Congratulations !!

Natalie Posted 4 months ago

I'm so proud of you!

Delayda Torres Posted 4 months ago

Awesome and congratulations!!! She's an awesome librarian!

Valerie Arenas Posted 4 months ago

Mrs. Ochoa is an exemplary librarian. She make our students feel right at home in the library. Since her arrival at our campus the library Has become a bustling place where students go to read, use technology to complete assignments, play games and to seek guidance from Mrs. Ochoa and her staff. She is not only there for students, but is an integral part of our staff. She’s always willing to help and teach us countless technological tips. We love Mrs. Ochoa!

Rocio Posted 4 months ago

Mrs. Ochoa has brought life to the library. Students and staff are excited to be there. She has fostered a positive environment where our students can learn and thrive.

Celena Miller Posted 4 months ago

Denise has always gone above and beyond for her students, colleagues, and school. She empowers her students to take on challenges and to try new things. She motivates her co-workers to be life long learners and become better teachers through improving their skills. Denise is innovative and brings an amazing energy to her school that makes students feel as though they have a safe place to learn. She has become a leader in the district in many areas including horticulture, sustainability, STEM, technology, and bilingual literacy. She truly changes the lives she touches!

Nayeli Hack Posted 4 months ago

Mrs. Ochoa is a wonderful and caring librarian who loves sharing her love for reading with everyone. She is constantly looking for new ways to keep people engaged and being a librarian is not only her profession, but her calling. We love you Mrs. Ochoa :)

Ariana Hinojosa Posted 4 months ago

Mrs.Ochoa is an amazing librarian. She is constantly motivating not only the students but also the families and staff to read. You can tell she really enjoys what she is doing. She is an amazing person inside out. Shes truly an inspiration to many and a positive light to anyone that she interacts with. Thank you for all you do