LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Anissa Cole

Position: GATE Teacher
School: David M. Cox Elementary School
School District: Clark County School District
City, State: Las Vegas, NV

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Anissa Cole's nomination was submitted by her colleague, Ryan DeVries, on behalf of their assistant principal, Andrea Heinlen: 

Ms. Cole is a phenomenal teacher who promotes critical thinking. Her engaging and thought-provoking lessons require students to communicate, collaborate, and be creative. Ms. Cole shares her expertise by mentoring new teachers and collaborating with colleagues. As grade-level chair, Ms. Cole is a leader in her school. In addition, she mentors teachers from other schools.

Ms. Cole is one of a kind. She is always asking, "What can I do?" She asks this of everyone! On and before Field Day, she asks the P.E. teachers, "What can I do?" If an administrator is absent from the building, Ms. Cole approaches the other administrator asking, "What can I do?" These are just a few examples; the list goes on and on. After more than 20 years of teaching, and in a time when teachers are burning out, she is sparking joy in others to reduce stress levels, which helps retain teachers and makes learning fun for kids so they become lifelong learners.

"I could not be more grateful to work with Anissa each and every day," said Heinlen.

Ms. Cole creates a positive school culture in every way imaginable. She plays music and wears roller skates in the lunchroom to turn it into a party. Ms. Cole dresses up like a dinosaur and gnome for fun. She is a crafter who makes wreaths, wood signs, etc. As the head of the social committee, Ms. Cole is crazy talented - we're talking party planner status! She creates balloon arches, decorates doors, caters luncheons, and hosts fun activities such as wooden rabbit stealing, "Boo" gifting, Secret Leprechaun, and White Elephant gift exchanges. At random times, Ms. Cole pushes around a treat cart to distribute treats to staff. She found painters and arranged for the school's front doors to be painted bright colors with "Welcome" written on them and the school's entryway to have "Welcome to the Cub Zone" painted on it. Ms. Cole plans every detail of Astro Camp and attends with the students. She is the staff winner of Gaga Ball and always stays after school for after-school activities. She has planned movie nights and even runs the school website.

"Honestly, who has the time? I mean, does she even sleep," said Heinlen. "For these reasons and more, Anissa Cole deserves to win the LifeChanger of the Year Award."

Comments (6)

Rali Pamukchieva Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Cole is a one of a kind. She is a wonderful teacher making my son to think outside of the box. She is always super energetic and fun. I think Mrs. Cole deserves this special recognition for her hard work and dedication.

Emily Newberry Posted over a year ago

Anissa Cole is top notch! She loves her students and it shows in everything she does. Mrs. Cole also is a huge supporter of all staff in the school. I have witnessed her go out of her way to help other teachers and guest teachers so no student is without the tools they need to succeed. On a personal note, Mrs. Cole has taught/influenced all three of my children in one way or another. They are all better for their time spent in her classroom. Anissa Cole is a “life changer” and is so deserving of this recognition.

Maggi Ross Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Cole has definitely not only had a very strong positive impact on my child's education but has without a doubt had a life changing impact on his life. For example she donated her own time to create ukalele class for the kids after school. She made it so fun that my son looked forward to this every week. And now he can play the ukalele and knows enough to now teach himself songs. Mrs. Cole offers kindness, validation, and encouragement to every student, not just those in her classroom. I feel extremely grateful and blessed to have her as an influence in my child's life and I wish all teachers were like her.

Rebecca Warnick Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Cole is AMAZING!! She has such a love for the students and makes sure they get a great education. Mrs. Cole goes above and beyond what is expected and is even working hard fundraising this year so the kids can go to Astro camp.

Debbie Warnick Posted over a year ago

Ms. Cole is truly an amazing person and all she does for our school is amazing. She makes everyday better for the students. Her hard work does deserve recognition!

Alison Dingle Posted over a year ago

Mrs Cole is a truly amazing teacher! She goes all in on every project. My kids adore her. Her teaching is smart and innovative, always thinking of something cooler to do. She definitely changed my children’s lives and I’m sure countless others. She is the real deal. One of the best ones out there. We are so lucky to have her.