Education

Meadowlark Elementary School’s Gagliano Receives Arch Coal, Inc. Teacher Award

Casper – Eugene M. Gagliano, a second grade teacher at Meadowlark Elementary School in Buffalo, Wyo., today was named one of 10 recipients of the 2001 Arch Coal, Inc. Teacher Achievement Award.

With the announcement, Arch Coal also presented Gagliano a $2,500 cash award, according to Arch Coal Vice President Terry O’Connor, who told an assembly at McKinley Elementary School in Casper that “teachers are entrusted with Wyoming’s most valuable resource – its children.” O’Connor was joined at the awards ceremony by Governor Jim Geringer, State Superintendent Judy Catchpole and Wyoming Education Association President Gary McDowell.

Gagliano, who has spent 28 of his 32 years of teaching in his present school district, says he became a teacher, because of his own fourth, fifth and sixth grade teachers, who built his self esteem and made learning fun.

“I continue to teach because I enjoy the educational challenges of today. Children need positive male role models in elementary school to help them prepare for the modern world. I am the father image for many children,” Gagliano says. “Building self esteem, respect for self and others, and a desire to learn are the most important things I do for my children. I also provide a safe, pleasant and happy classroom experience.”

“Mr. Gagliano is a very positive individual, who always has a kind word for a student, parent, or fellow teacher. He is an exceptional teacher, who truly makes a difference in the lives of young children,” says Gagliano’s supervisor, Robert Tyser, principal at Meadowlark Elementary.

George J. Schafer, senior vice president, First National Bank of Buffalo, says “Mr. ‘G,’ as he is respectfully called by his students, is sensitive to all his students’ needs, from the gifted, to the mentally challenged, to the physically handicapped, and he openly accepts the teaching challenges to meet those needs. He always has the child’s best interest in mind.”

Relating her experiences with, as she says, “the legendary Mr. ‘G,’” Marcy Schuler, a parent of a former Gagliano student, says, “His unique blend of discipline and humor create a classroom environment that encourages creativity, teamwork, and, above all, learning. Children are truly blessed to be in the classroom of this incredible teacher.”

Gagliano believes families must help provide children with a sound language background early in life. “Next to loving your child, reading to them is the most important thing you can do for them,” he suggests. “My greatest gift is the ability to relate to children. I respect them, sincerely care about them, and use my sense of humor to reach them.”

Gagliano has an AAS degree in ornamental horticulture from the State University of New York, Cobleskill, and a Bachelor of Science Degree from State University of New York, Genesco.

This was the inaugural year of the Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards in Wyoming. Arch Coal is the nation’s second largest coal producer. Arch employs more than 500 people in Wyoming and produces more than 60 million tons of clean-burning, low-sulfur coal annually at its Wyoming operations. The company’s Black Thunder operation in Campbell County is one of the nation’s largest and most efficient coal mines. Arch Coal is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACI) and makes its corporate headquarters in St. Louis, Mo.