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Our Very First Star Paraprofessional of the Month Is Named!

Congratulations, Elaine Gibbins!
Posted on 01/10/2018
Elaine Gibbins

At MISD’s January School Board meeting, the inaugural MISD Star Paraprofessional Award recipient was announced. Fortunately, we have the unique "problem" of having had so many wonderful and dedicated paraprofessionals stand out. The final choice rested on a deserving recipient who has touched countless lives over her decades of service to MISD.

Elaine Gibbins first came to Mesquite ISD when she began her career in 1971 as an English teacher at Vanston Middle School, under the leadership of George Childress. She went on to teach at Agnew and Wilkinson Middle Schools before making the decision to stay home with her children—who would go on to attend and graduate from MISD schools. Not only did Elaine and her children, Allison and Greg, get their professional and educational foundations through Mesquite ISD, the district is truly a Gibbins family affair: husband, Doug Gibbins was the first athletic trainer in Mesquite ISD from 1972-74, also serving as trainer at Mesquite High School..

While the district was never far from her heart even while not directly employed by it, in 1990, Lanny Frasier presented Elaine with the perfect professional opportunity to change that status. The newly opened Poteet High School was in need of an administrative assistant, and Mr. Frasier knew he needed Elaine on his office support team. As luck would have it, daughter Allison began at Poteet as well (Greg would follow soon after), so this position would indeed blend two things she loved—her children and service to others. Elaine hasn’t looked back since!

In the 28 years that Elaine has worked at Poteet, she has worked for (or as she says: "trained") six of Poteet’s seven principals, four of the five current high school principals, and numerous district coordinators and assistant superintendents. All would tell you in a second how blessed they are to have learned from and experienced Elaine's insight, kindness and wisdom.

It is clear that Elaine is a role model to her children as well. Daughter Allison Gibbins Lewallyn, graduated from PHS in 1992, and has been employed in MISD for 15 years, splitting her time between teaching Professional Communications at Poteet High School (where mom and daughter are together again) and serving as the district’s communications coordinator for 12 years. Allison's husband, Randy Lewallyn, also a 1992 PHS graduate, is currently the Executive Director of the Mesquite ISD Education Foundation, a role he has held for six years. Son Greg Gibbins, a 1996 PHS graduate, was one of the first students in the KEOM program from 1994-95, and he credits this radio introduction as the inspiration to pursue many opportunities in the radio/voiceover industry.

As Poteet High School Assistant Principal Misty Rose put it best, "One cannot say Poteet High School and not immediately think of Elaine Gibbins." We are incredibly honored to be the district where amazing people like Elaine Gibbins choose to spend their career, as well as devote their lives and time to making us better with each day they literally show up. Congratulations to Elaine and the entire Gibbins family!