Vicki Sargent, former executive director of the Denton Public School Foundation, was honored with a grant in her name at the foundation’s Groundhog Day Gala on Saturday.
The $10,000 teachers’ grant was a surprise to Sargent, who now serves as the district’s executive director of elementary programs.
Sargent said Monday that the recognition brought her to tears and she was still trying to process it.
“It was absolutely humbling and overwhelming,” she said. “They completely caught me by surprise. I’m so appreciative of it. I was just blown away.”
Sargent joined the Denton district as a fifth-grade teacher. Over the span of nearly 30 years, she’s served the district as an elementary assistant principal and principal, its former executive director for the Denton Public School Foundation from 2002-12, and now as its executive director of elementary programs.
The Vicki Sargent Grant-to-Teachers recognizes her work as a classroom teacher, an administrator and Denton Public School Foundation director, said Jackie Jackson, the foundation’s executive director.
“She’s come from the first rung of the ladder as a classroom teacher all the way to being a district administrator,” Jackson said. “Because of her leadership with the foundation and her vision, she was able during her tenure to build the assets of the foundation to about $1.8 million.
“I think this was a passion for her because she had been a teacher. Because she had been a teacher, she understood their needs.”
Jackson said the foundation will allow Sargent to decide the winners for grants bearing her name.
Sargent said it’s special and dear to her heart that the grant that bears her name will go to teachers.
“Grants to teachers impact usually a whole classroom of students,” she said.
More than a dozen new endowments, grants and scholarships were announced at the gala at the University of North Texas Gateway Center before more than 400 guests. Many honored current Denton district employees.
“It just tells me that there are so many good people doing good things in this district, and it heartens me to see that other people recognize that and want to honor it,” Jackson said. “Education sometimes gets a hard rap … and it’s so important to recognize there’s so much good that goes on in our district.”
Gala proceeds and other contributions to the foundation benefit grants for classroom initiatives, teacher professional development training, and teacher and student scholarships.
BRITNEY TABOR can be reached at 940-566-6876. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org .
Other new endowments, grants and scholarships announced Feb. 2 included:
• $20,000 endowment given by Sawko and Burroughs P.C.
• $20,000 endowment given by Balfour Beatty
• $20,000 CoServ Electric 2013 Teacher Assistance Grant
• $10,000 Teresa Andress Grant-to-Teachers given by an anonymous donor to honor the Sam Houston Elementary School principal.
• $10,000 Ray E. Braswell Sr. Grant-to-Teachers given by former Superintendent Ray Braswell Jr. and wife, Cydney
• $10,000 Bravo Communications Consultants “What’s Your Plan BE?” Student Scholarship
• $10,000 Barb Haflich and Nancy Dobson Social Services Endowment given by Sawko and Burroughs P.C.
• $2,500 VLK 2013 Grant-to-Teachers given by VLK Architects
• $145,000-plus Lantana Foundation contribution
• $5,000 Willie and Iris Lopez Student Scholarship given by B. Iris Lopez LLC
• DISD Health Services Barb Haflich Student Scholarship
• $20,000 Coach Jim Bateman Scholarship Fund