Member Voices

Leslie Crow, Todd County

11/21/2019
Han, Mitakuyepi. Leslie Crow, emaciyapi. Greetings! My name is Leslie Crow. I am a Lead Teacher at Okreek School within the Todd County School District. I have been a member for 2 years. I joined SDEA to be an advocate for other aspiring Native American educators. The best part about joining SDEA is networking with other educators to expand my teaching repertoire to help students grow into positive and successful human beings.

Curt Anderson, Oglala Lakota

11/21/2019
Hi! My name is Curt Anderson. My local is the Oglala Lakota County Education Association within Oglala Lakota County Schools. I’ve been a member for 10 years and a teacher at OLC for seven years. I’m currently a 2nd grade teacher at Rockyford School. I’m also on the SDEA Board of Directors as a Minority At-Large member and also a part of the Racial and Social Justice Advisory Council. The best part of being a member is being a part of something that supports teachers and educators to help our students.

Madison EA

11/20/2019
The Madison Education Association currently has 58 members from three buildings in our district. As a local we meet monthly for socials and bimonthly for meetings. We provide PD training for our members to strengthen leadership and our profession. MEA takes an active role in our community food pantry and banquet meal at the Methodist Church. MEA established a Teacher Support Grant that helps our members enhance their classrooms without spending their own money. MEA supports American Education Week, advocates through bargaining for our members and provides scholarships for our future leaders from MHS.

Dina Vanderwilt, Mitchell

11/7/2019
I teach Kindergarten at L.B. Williams Elementary in the Mitchell School District. I have been a member of SDEA for 10 years. I joined SDEA so that I would have a voice and the “reassurance that someone has my back as a teacher.” SDEA gives teachers the resources and support to make a difference in students' lives. SDEA is a great place to connect with teachers in South Dakota so that we can learn from each other.

Meghan Wounded Head, Sioux Falls

11/6/2019
I'm Meghan Wounded Head, and I teach Accelerated English 2 and AP Literature. This is my eighteenth year of teaching, the past seven at Sioux Falls Washington High School. While I've only been a member of SDEA/SFEA for a few years, I originally joined for security/protection. Serving as high school director for my local, SDEA/SFEA has really given me a spark. As I've grown to further understand the advocacy of SDEA/SFEA, I now know my role in SFEA to give teachers a voice and a positive boost so we can do what's best for our students. I want my colleagues to know we are there for one another and when united, we are stronger. That's what is most important to me - support and collegiality. We all do good things for the children we see every day; Let's support one another along the way. SDEA/SFEA gives us the platform to do that.

Alison TerHorst, Sioux Falls

11/1/2019
My Name is Alison TerHorst and I am a teacher at Washington High School in Sioux Falls. I teach Psychology I & II, AP Psychology, and Teacher Pathway. I have been teaching for 14 years and have been a part of SDEA for 14 years. To be honest, in the beginning I joined because it sounded like a good protection plan, like insurance. I don’t think I fully understood what the SDEA did. But after building relationships with the past two presidents of the SFEA Pam Oberempt, and Tony Martinet, I am so appreciative of everything they do to support me. I have had a lot of medical scares in my family and the presidents have always helped me know how much time I get and really just helped me in both professional and personal ways. Every year there is something different that I find to appreciate.

Penny Shuster Louks, Belle Fourche

10/31/2019
Penny Shuster Louks; Belle Fourche Education Association; 8th Language Arts; I have been a member of SDEA since 2004; previously, I was a member while teaching in Casper, Wyoming and a student member at BHSU as well. My reasons for joining SDEA are to engage with other professionals, to safeguard my rights as a teacher, and to advocate for new and continuing educators. The best parts about joining SDEA have been the opportunities to participate in continuing education that is meaningful and to work in my local, supporting others and effecting change within the district and my building.

Nicole Dallman, Mobridge-Pollock

10/30/2019
My name is Nicole Dallman. I have been a member of SDEA for 15 years with the last four years being at the Mobridge-Pollock School District where I am a 3rd grade teacher. I became a member of SDEA at the beginning of my teaching career because I was looking for the insurance. What I didn’t know is that SDEA is so much more. I was able to get classroom support through Professional Development that was brought into our school district by MPEA. I also gained the support and comradery of fellow teachers that are also members.

Mallory Meier, Pierre

10/30/2019
My name is Mallory Meier. I am a member of the Pierre Education Association. I teach 8th Grade US History at Georgia Morse Middle School and have been a member since my freshman year at Dakota Wesleyan University. I initially joined because I had to, but quickly realized the value in being a part of a professional organization. From professional development to advocacy and everything in between, SDEA has been an invaluable part of my teaching career.

Caroline Thompson, Elk Point, SD

7/23/2019
Salutations fellow members and educators! My name is Caroline Thompson and I am part of the EPJEA. I will teach first grade this coming school year. I have been a member of SDEA for three years. Initially, I joined SDEA for the liability protection benefits. It wasn't until this summer that I really began to see the benefits of SDEA membership. The professional development offerings and personal connections made within this exceptional organization are amazing and lasting. The best part about being part of SDEA is the ability to be an active voice to advocate for real change within our educational system. I look forward to using my voice and hope others will join in order to make our collective voice louder, stronger, and heard. Our students deserve strong and vocal advocates.