LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Missy Smith

Position: School Counselor
School: Lincoln Elementary School
School District: Norman Public Schools
City, State: Norman, OK

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Missy Smith was nominated by the Oklahoma School Counselor Association.

Ms. Smith's leadership skills have made her known as a student advocate for equality. She's a visionary thinker in creating new avenues for student success and social/emotional development. Ms. Smith masterfully engages students to feel safe and valued. She provides tier three interventions for students in crisis, which has led to mental health evaluations. Then, she walks every step of the way with the students and their families to ensure their well-being. 

Comments (49)

Oklahoma School Counselor Association Posted over a year ago

Missy was selected as our Oklahoma School Counselor of the Year for good reason. She is a true visionary. She has dedicated her work to benefit EVERY Oklahoma student, not just her own school. One of the ways that she has done so is her work as the Oklahoma School Counselor Association's president. Her leadership has helped our organization become more efficient and effective, which has increased our reach into the state and our support to school counselors as they work for Oklahoma Students. She gives each board member support and communicates that they are appreciated. She is a leader in her school district. She serves on her district's trauma executive committee where she helps lead professional development efforts that increase educator's knowledge of students who have experienced trauma and better serve them in the classroom. She is a dynamic presence in her school. She knows all of her students' names and works to make sure they know they are valued and important. She teaches lessons that help students build a foundation for future success. She has a passion for equity and student success. She is a LifeChanger.

Lauren Merriman Posted over a year ago

I have known Missy since 2004 when we met in college. She is one of the most beautiful souls I have ever had the privilege to know, and I'm honored I get to call her my friend. Missy is passionate, innovative, encouraging, and humble. She loves deeply and is incredibly loyal to those she has taken under her wing or befriends. She seeks wise counsel when she needs it, and isn't afraid to ask questions or dig for answers. She constantly looks for ways that she can personally improve situations, or ways that she can encourage others to help do their part to make something better. She has a genuine passion for her students, and it is evident in the way she talks about her love for her career and the innovative ways she seeks to make even the smallest difference in their lives, Missy is a shining example and role model to the students that she serves, as well as her peers and fellow educators.

Beth Mills Posted over a year ago

I have only known and worked with Missy since this past July. However, in that short time I have been very impressed with her leadership which begins with her service to others. Missy has a deep passion for the school counselor career evidenced by her leadership through a very trying pandemic season and working to make improvements in a variety of ways in order to better serve school counselors statewide. In conversations it is evident that her passion for her students and staff also oozes over. Missy is a life changer both in big, bold ways with the work she does for OSCA, and also in those small ways that have lasting impacts on the young people and their parents she serves and interacts with daily.

Keri Young Posted over a year ago

Missy is an exceptional school counselor who is always doing her best to ensure her students are loved, well taken care of and enjoy learning. Because of her leadership and devotion her students are kind, compassionate and empathetic people. She sets them up for success on a daily basis and is consistent in her care for them. Missy is a true lead by example woman and models key characteristics for her students. Lincoln is better because she is there!

Kindal Posted over a year ago

Missy is downright awesome! She is honest, hardworking, caring, and devoted. The list could go on and on and I’m lucky enough to call her a friend. She’s a light in this world. The students at Lincoln Elementary are incredibly blessed to have someone like her to confide in and look up to.

Lydia Steelman Posted over a year ago

Missy Smith has a fierce devotion to helping others especially those in need. She will fight for others to be treated justly.

Stephanie Posted over a year ago

Missy is a great advocate for the students at Lincoln. We are lucky to have her.

Vicki Campbell Posted over a year ago

Missy is a wonderful person and I'm glad she played a part in my children's lives.

Brandon Brady Posted over a year ago

What a great nominee.

Bruce Posted over a year ago

She’s a wonderful woman with a wonderful family doing a wonderful job

Chandler Francis Posted over a year ago

Missy is one of the most kind and compassionate individuals I’ve ever met!

Mark Powell Posted over a year ago

Let’s go, Missy!! What a gift to Lincoln Elementary!

Christine Posted over a year ago

Missy is an incredible person who has a passion for advocating for her students. She always thinks about others and is one of the most selfless loving people I have ever met. She is a great mentor and counselor to her students and to everyone she comes across.

Cindy Fulmer Posted over a year ago

I've known Missy for about fifteen years and she's one of the most dedicated person to God, her family and career. Her love of children is unmatched and has changed many lives. She's a blessing to all and has such a sweet loving spirit. We're very proud of her!

Christine Posted over a year ago

She’s changed my life for the better :)

Lindsey Yandell Posted over a year ago

Missy was my first real friend after moving 600 miles away from my only home to Oklahoma, it's been quite some time now since we've seen each other but I'll forever be grateful to her and her friendship to me in a time that I really needed it. Her passion for life is what makes her such an amazing person, her laughter and light are so contagious, anybody that knows her loves her. It makes me so happy to see her pursue her dreams in every part of her life and I know that she has to be probably the most amazing counselor her school has ever seen. She's truly a gift to this world.

Nicole Taylor Posted over a year ago

Missy is a fun-loving, hard-working, extremely passionate, and caring person. She has worked tirelessly on the counseling program at Lincoln Elementary to make it one of the best in the state! Many children’s lives will be directly positively impacted because of Missy!

Sherry Fennell Posted over a year ago

Missy had a successful career as a Licensed Professional Counselor. She decided to change course and become a school counselor , because of her love of children . It is her calling and passion. She is so highly dedicated and loves her students . She worked tirelessly to help her title 1 school become one of three schools in the state to attain Ramp status. Missy is Oklahoma’s School Counselor of the year and she does change lives every single day.

Molly Beauchamp Posted over a year ago

I am so very glad to know Missy Smith! When I first met her, my daughter was a student at Lincoln Elementary. Over the years, I have witnessed (and heard from my child) about so many great things Missy does for the kids at Lincoln Elementary. Beyond that, I have experienced first-hand her everyday kindness, encouragement, and positivity in our gym. She is truly a remarkable woman, and our community is very lucky to have her.

Barbara Cummins Posted over a year ago

We are so proud of Missy, she has always been such a blessing to her friends, family, church and others. She has such a sweet spirit that truly cares about much like her mom, Too!

Barbara Cummins Posted over a year ago

Missy you have always been an amazing person, we have know you since you were a young girl...caring for your friends and your family, church too! We are very proud of you

Ladonna Shaffer Posted over a year ago

Missy is encourager to all. She has a positive, uplifting attitude. She is the first to introduce herself to new people. Welcoming to everyone she meets.

Kyle Posted over a year ago

Missy Smith is the bright spot in everyone’s day. She goes out of her way to show the kids at her school love and kindness everyday. The word “everyday” is not an exaggeration. She is beyond thoughtful, always checking in on others (even if her day isn’t going well). She genuinely wants every kid at her school to be successful and does whatever she can to make that happen. She is encouraging, fun, and always has the kids’ best interest in mind. My two kids are at her school, and I couldn’t be more pleased with how they are developing as young men. She is more than a life changer, because she touches so many lives (that will, in turn, touch others).

Liz Harjo Posted over a year ago

Missy is a light to everyone she comes in contact with. Amazing woman!

Joey Griffith Posted over a year ago

As a NPS alum I am so glad our public schools have a resource like Missy. I went to Kennedy which is adjacent to Lincoln and know the struggles of the area. Thank you for your continued support of our children, our future. KXN

Jenna Posted over a year ago

Thank you for all of your hard work and dedication to your profession and the children! You are an amazing woman.

Kyle Posted over a year ago

Every moment I’ve spent with Missy she has been an unrelenting force of positivity and kindness. You can always tell she puts a hundred percent effort in to everything she does and every goal she has.

Michell Coffman Posted over a year ago

Missy is a very caring and positive individual. When she walks in the room it’s automatically a brighter and happier space. She truly cares about the well being of others and has dedicated her life to the well being of children both in her role as a counselor and as a leader in her faith.

Erin Crimmins Posted over a year ago

Missy is truly an advocate and cheerleader for our school and students. As a special education teacher at Lincoln, I have learned an ambundant amount from her in how to equitably serve my students better. Many people don't understand what school counselors do.Well let me inform you on the "golden standard" of school counseling from my personal experience. She is a fierce believer in providing a safe and loving place to learn for ALL children. This is portrayed in her thoughts, words, and actions. Missy is better equipped to serve our students than many other school counselors. Before serving students at Lincoln, Missy worked with individuals in the mental health field. This component it itself makes her stand out from her peers. She has the knowledge and hands on experience to not only provide social emotional lessons, but to aid in students who are expereincing trauma or mental illness. She also has a love for learning and continually betters herself to best serve our school. Missy has several innovative initiatives that she began at Lincoln. These include Kindness Club, Minute Meetings with every student, informative worry videos for families, small focus skill groups, Great Kindness Challenge, Wellness Week, and 5th grade career fair and interviews. Missy also works tirelessly with community stakeholders to provide support to our students. Some of these stakeholders include School Bell, churches, mentor programs, Watch Dogs, and partners with the University of Oklahoma athletes. Missy is a gem and we are beyond lucky to have her at Lincoln. Our school has been impacted by her loving, empathetic, gracious, and endearing soul.

Ruth Kammerlocher Posted over a year ago

As a School Counselor for Lincoln Elementary School (LES), Missy Smith, has provided services to students, families and fellow staff members which has created a lasting and positive impact much of which does not allow for shared awareness due to confidentially needs. She is also a leader in her profession beyond LES. Her commitment to mentoring and advocating at the district, state and national level for implementation of best practices has led others to paradigm shifts which has created opportunity for change in services delivery. Through her commitment to our school community and professional standards, Missy is a Life Changer; better yet she supports and elevates others to find their way to become Life Changers.

Jamie Sexton Posted over a year ago

My three children attended/attend Lincoln Elementary and we are grateful. Mrs. Smith has always been there for the kids when they had issues and other teachers have expressed how wonderful she is to work with. Her commitment to her job and the children is obvious and she’s always enthusiastic.

Sherry Franklin Posted over a year ago

Missy is an amazing counselor! She puts her students first by looking at things from their point of view. She has come into Lincoln like a breeze of fresh air! As a teacher she has opened my eyes to see my students on their level. She has spearheaded trauma training for the teachers. She has guided us in self-care and in how to be there for our students. We wouldn't be the same without her!

Brad Arnold Posted over a year ago

I’ve experienced first-hand the impact of Missy’s work from a professional, spiritual, and relational perspective. On top of her high performing role as a student counselor, Missy volunteers her talent and effort at a local youth ministry where she works to help create a safe space where youth can come and experience a setting far different than many of their home lives. Missy is also known at her local gym for contributing her positive attitude and encouragement to other members. In every community that she is a part of, she is known for her servant-hearted disposition and her willingness to help others. Any resources directed to her efforts would yield exponential results.

Cynthia Givens Posted over a year ago

Thank you for all of your hard work and dedication to the profession and the children! Dominic Williams is our lil church brother. Blessings to you and your family

Diane Posted over a year ago

Missy Smith makes the world and her community a better place by seeking out ways to enhance the lives of others. She is also a state leader in her field as a school counselor. Lives of children and adults are changed for the better because their paths have crossed with hers. From providing basic necessities, to extras like an indoor physical motion pathway for kids, Missy is always on the lookout for ways she can change the lives of others in a positive way.

Laurie Ahpeatone Posted over a year ago

Missy is Lincoln's school counselor. I am a special education teacher, and Missy has been a great sounding board when dealing with difficult students and giving me non-partial advice and providing open minded strategies for motivating the students. Anyone who has chosen education as their profession, could certainly use a counselor like Missy Smith to help keep us positive and motivated.

Ashley Ingram Posted over a year ago

No one deserves this award more. Missy is the best!! She is not only a fun and amazing person to work with, absolutely wonderful with all of our students, but she has definitely been a life changer for myself and my two daughters. She has always loved them, advocated for their best interests, helped me understand their 504 plans, stood in for our Grandparents Day celebration with my youngest when my mom was unable to attend, and most recently helped us get through what has been the toughest season of our lives as we adapted to our new normal of “just the 3 of us” last February — She offered all of the resources we might need, she checked-in with my youngest daily to make sure she was adjusting well(my oldest is in 8th grade now), made sure we had food, helped me to give my girls a good Christmas, and still always takes the time to ask ME if I am okay. We absolutely adore Missy Smith, we are so blessed to have her at Lincoln, and I am blessed to call her a friend. WE LOVE YOU, MISSY!!! No matter what, you will always be OUR Lifechanger of the Year!! Lots of love to you! -Ashley, Zari, and Bri

Katie Messner Posted over a year ago

Missy is such a positive presence at our elementary school. She is constantly working to impact the lives of Lincoln students and do what she can to help them grow in all aspects of their life. Struggling individuals seek out her patience and affection. The students at Lincoln know she cares about and loves them. They know her door is always open for them to come and talk with her or just stop by for a hug and hello. She works to provide each student with the interventions they need to help them deal with present and future social and emotional challenges. She is creative in her teaching approach and explains social-emotional concepts in ways the students she is teaching will understand. She tailors her whole group and small group lessons to reflect the needs of her students and takes advantage of teachable moments. She has a heart that cares for the students at our school and also the staff members she works with. In my two years of teaching, she has stopped by my classroom often to check on how I was doing and to see if I needed anything. She always has something positive to share that makes your laugh or lifts your mood when you're down! Missy has the determination of a leader, the heart of an encourager, and the passion of an individual who aims to influence every life she encounters in a positive way.

Mandy Burnam Posted over a year ago

Missy is an amazing councilor!

Angela Smentek Posted over a year ago

Missy (and her whole family) have devoted their lives to pouring into students. Love her heart to care for every aspect of a student’s life. So glad you’ve gotten recognition for all of the work that you’re doing Missy!

Krystal Black Posted over a year ago

Missy's heart for her students and her dedication make her so deserving of this!

Emily Posted over a year ago

Missy has been a life changer for our family! Last year my husband had stage 4 cancer, and our 6 year old experienced big emotions that she needed help understanding and controlling. Even when we were doing virtual school during the pandemic, Missy would FaceTime our daughter for counseling sessions, and they were so helpful. She is always willing to offer resources and encouragement for whatever our family needs. I don’t know what we would do without her!

Lynn Susanto Posted over a year ago

Missy loves our students and works diligently to help them navigate through some tough family and school situations. She dedicates herself to teaching our students to be kind, empathetic, responsible students who strive to be true to themselves. She is a wonderful asset to our school and an excellent collaborator and coworker.

KRISTIE ROZIER Posted over a year ago

Missy is an amazing school counselor. She has led school wide initiatives for inclusion and wellness. She is instrumental in developing Individualized Education Plans and student accommodation needs.

Davene Posted over a year ago

Missy Smith is definitely a life changer! Her impact on the kids at Lincoln Elementary is superb. She has my vote.

Beth A Gilberg Posted over a year ago

Missy is the best! She teaches relevant social lessons in the classroom and is always kind and understanding with children and adults. She is an advocate for mental health care not only for children but for adults as well. She has designed and taught units for 5th graders on careers that allow students to think about their passions and how they can translate into future careers.

Elizabeth crittenden Posted over a year ago

A school couldn’t ask for a better counselor. Time and time again she has made sure that my family was never drowning. My son who is six had some behavior issues due to some trauma he experienced early on in life and Mrs.Smith has dedicated so much time to making sure he gets help he needs to not just manage but thrive.

Laura Hill Posted over a year ago

A well-deserved nomination for a counselor fully invested in her students’ emotional health and academic success.

Olivia Dean Posted over a year ago

Missy is a life changer! She has devoted herself to school counseling to impact lives. She has my vote! She is dynamic in all she does.