For 12 years, Judy Lehman provided classroom aid for students with disabilities in the Watertown Unified School District. In May 2019, the Council honored her impact on the lives of students who are blind or visually impaired with a Community Volunteer Excellence Award. She retired in June 2019.
“When I worked with each student, I wanted them to know they could do anything they set their mind to,” Judy says. “Blindness was not an excuse or a reason to give up.”
Judy was initially hired for the para-professional position due to her knowledge of braille. She raised two daughters who are blind, Melissa and Jennifer, and learned braille to teach them how to read and write it.
Judy demonstrated a commitment to her students by coming to work early and used personal time to make sure her students had the same materials in braille that their sighted classmates had in print. She volunteered her time to braille student’s Confirmation materials, Pokémon cards and other free literature.
Six words her nominator, Kristin Grender, used to describe Judy: positive, unselfish, giving, motivated, passionate and advocate.
“It is an honor to receive this award,” Judy says. “I did not know I had been nominated, so it was such a surprise to find out. I retired in June, so it is a great way to end my career and finish on a high note.”
Do you know an individual or organization who has made a difference in the lives of people who are blind or visually impaired? Nominate them for a Council Excellence Award. Application materials are available now and the deadline is Friday, April 17 2020.