LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Jodie Gracey

Position: Special Education Teacher
School: White Pines Intermediate School
School District: Grand Haven Area Public Schools
City, State: Grand haven, MI

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Music that Describes Jodie


Jodie Gracey was nominated by her spouse, Scott Gracey.

Ms. Gracey works with severely disabled children who are often wheelchair bound, non-verbal, equipped with feeding tubes, or have other physical limitations. She always has a smile when working with them and is always happy to assist them in any way possible.

Her goal is to make them feel they are no different than any other young person and deserve the same opportunity or experiences as anyone. She offers to pick them up and bring them to school dances and after-school activities to make sure they can enjoy the time with their friends. She calls local businesses to get donations to pay for their very expensive accessories like wheelchairs, special bikes, arm and foot braces, and special dietary needs. She has asked for donations to help her students afford field trips or special activities if their family is not able to afford them. She would gladly give up her free time if it meant one of her students could get the time to experience life as a normal kid.

Comments (8)

Toni Patzke Williams Posted 9 months ago

Jodie is a blessing to our community! She'll stop at nothing to help the special needs people here. She's worked long and hard to achieve the goals she set for herself and them. She's selfless and determined, and I admire her very much. She sets her mind and heart on amazing goals, as she's reaches them every time! If anyone deserves the recognition, it's Jodie!

Joanne Spangler Posted 9 months ago

She is a wonderful lady with the biggest heart!! She donates so much of her time and own money to get supplies for her special needs kids in her class!

Autumn Posted 9 months ago

Jodie is one the most selfless people I have ever met. She does absolutely anything she can to help the people around her. I can’t think of a more deserving person for this award.

Alan Hass Posted 9 months ago

Jodie is a very caring person. She is constantly doing things for her students. Her artistic talent is used to make money for the students benefits. She would make great use of the money towards the special needs kids in our area schools.

Tina Posted 9 months ago

I personally don't know Jodie but being I have an 11-year-old autistic, non-verbal grandson I know the patient level these children need. Congratulations to Jodie for the love and care you bring to the special children!!

Alicia Green Posted 9 months ago

Jodie is an amazing woman. She has a heart of gold and loves all the kids in her room as if they were her own. She is a strong advocate for them. She donates countless hours to helping the students and their families. She has embraced her position in the SXI room and I can’t think of another person who would deserve this more than her. She is truly one of a kind.

Matt Posted 9 months ago

I have had the pleasure of working with Mrs Gracey over this last summer. Observing the dedication to our students, passion for fund raising has been inspiring. Spending her summer attending events with the sole purpose of bringing awareness to and raising money for our severely disabled students. Mrs Gracey changes lives one adaptive bike or adaptive walker at a time. The freedom those items bring to a child who is trapped in a wheelchair can not be measured except by watching the joy in their face or hearing the giggles as we “go faster” …. Thank you Jodie

Sarah Dahl Posted 9 months ago

Jodie has been in our lives for the last few years as a teacher for my special needs daughter. Our family is now proud to call her a good friend as well. Not only does she care for the kids in her class like they were her own, she goes above and beyond to help them thrive. She teaches disabled children all day about the amazing ABILITIES they have. She coordinates fun outings and activities they can do in the community to help them feel independent and valued. In her precious little free time, she has started a non-profit program called “Rockys Rocks”, who’s sole purpose is fundraising and collecting donations to purchase adaptive equipment for these very same kids. She paints beautiful art on “Rockys Rocks” to sell at various events and shows to also raise funds for these students’ needs. Her heart is as big as her ambition to help people of all disabilities. She’s focused and driven to reach her goals - goals that benefit others and not herself. She prefers to keep her “kids (students)” in the limelight and forego that privilege herself. But she deserves the honor of this award…many times over.