Staff Spotlight: Kendra Ritchie ’66

Mrs. Kendra Ritchie, a 1966 Lee Academy graduate, returns this fall as Guidance Counselor in addition to her position as ESL Program Coordinator.  With a Master’s Degree in Counseling and a TESOL certification, she is well-prepared to guide Lee Academy students into the future.  She is an energetic and enthusiastic advocate for students and she is looking forward to the school year ahead.

In her words, “I am still loving Lee Academy, and thoroughly enjoying my work with local students, Native American students, and international students.  One can’t imagine the pleasure of seeing so many cultures and personalities enjoying working and learning together until you experience the community of Lee Academy. I have never really desired to go to work any place else.

Kev and Ken3863866180526461415_n“My husband, Kevin, works for Maine Indian Education, and my son Aaron is a nurse/paramedic here at Lee Academy.  My daughter is a Health Conference Producer in Boston and her husband is continuing in medical school at Tufts. I have four grandsons who are fun and smart and also good looking! I enjoy sports (I love basketball -especially the Celtics!), animals (three cats and a dog – maybe a horse soon), reading, and hanging out with kids. I also love traveling and look forward to many more adventures around the world, meeting up with former students from Maine and beyond.

I was a student at Lee Academy many years ago, and this school has been close to my heart all of my life – I am still here these many years later! I think the most valuable thing I learned while I was a student at Lee Academy was that the teachers there had an amazing impact on my life.  I learned that when a teacher cares about you, you listen and learn, even when you may not appear to do so.  Mr. Dingley, Mrs. Norton, Mrs. Butterfield, Ms. Austin, Mr. Sawyer, Mr. Lowell, Mrs. Saba, Mr. MacDonald, Mr. Mitchell, Mr. Storms, Mrs. Stevens and others, in various ways cared about me, challenged me, and I learned something about life from every one of them.  Also, looking back, I realize that each of my friends and classmates had great influence on me (mostly good!) This may all sound trite, but when I became an educator, I realized how important that job was and better understood what it meant to have unconditional, positive regard for each and every one of my kids.  That is my challenge and my mantra.  Thanks to Lee Academy for teaching me what it meant to grow up and learn in a caring community.  Returning to the guidance office is like coming home to me.  I started here, took a number of years and enjoyed other roles, but now I hope to finish my years (who knows how many more!) in a job and a place I love. I look forward to working with many talented and caring educators who will continue to do their best for the Lee Academy community and students.”

We are very excited to have Mrs. Ritchie assume this position at Lee Academy.