Valley teacher and coach Doug Guenther has been recognized by the Michigan District as the 2021 High School Teacher of the Year. As a 38-year veteran in Lutheran school classrooms, Guenther has left a lasting impression on thousands of students. Katie (Jones) Brewer (VL ‘00 ) responded to the news of this honor, “Well-deserving and should come as no surprise. He’s far more than just a teacher. I am grateful for his investment in my life.” That investment has not only been in teaching science and theology classes, but coaching both the boys and girls soccer teams, delivering chapel messages, leading a family group, and encouraging the whole Valley Lutheran family.
Mr. Guenther’s colleagues are a part of that family and shared these sentiments in the nomination process:
(Doug) continues to reinvent his classroom to be what students most need now… I so appreciate his willingness to try new things and to participate in professional development activities that are designed to benefit students.
When things get really tough (like 9/11 or the death of a student) Doug is the one we go to for a schoolwide chapel message as he has a true gift in being able to share God’s peace and comfort with all of us.
He has devoted his life to sharing the Gospel and educating young minds and provides an important example for younger teachers.
Travis Grulke, Superintendent of Schools for the Michigan District summarizes, “It is evident that Doug’s ministry to the students, staff, and families at Valley is one that should be celebrated. He has blessed Valley’s ministry for many years. We are thankful for his work both inside and outside of the classroom, and we look forward to hearing how Doug continues to have a powerful impact on those he has been called to serve!”