The 13-year veteran of the Lake and Peninsula Borough School District was selected for the award by the Alaska Association of Secondary School Principals.
The Newhalen School Principal Ed Lester was honored as the region’s Principal of the Year.
Lake and Peninsula District Superintendent Ty Mase has worked with Lester for nearly a decade.
“Ed is probably one of the better administrators in the state of Alaska in terms of knowing his community and the politics that surround the school," says Mase. "He's focused on children, he's focused on extracurriculars. He just does a very nice job and has a very well-rounded approach to educating children.”
After teaching for several years in Perryville and then Kohkanok, Lester was itinerant principal for Pedro Bay and Levelock. Five years ago, he returned to his alma mater in Newhalen to serve as Principal.
Lester says some of his favorite moments as an educator have been seeing former students return after college or training programs.
“Five or six years later, they're contributing members of our community. They've got kids, they're holding down jobs, and they're contributing positively," says Lester. "We've got a bunch of young adults like that in our community. And that's always a highlight for me, to see that we helped give these kids choices in life that are healthy and productive.”
Lester has also served as the District's athletic director for several of his 13 years with the district.
Region VII for the Alaska Association of Secondary School Principals encompasses Southwest Alaska.