WES’s Brennan Named Maine Art Educator of the Year

Post date: Apr 25, 2014 12:57:39 PM

In March, Wells Elementary School Art Teacher Sandy Brennan was recognized as Maine Art Educator of the Year 2014 by the Maine Art Education Association (MAEA).

This recognition came during an awards ceremony on March 8th at the Portland Museum of Art (PMA) for over 119 K-12 students whose teacher-selected artwork from 92 schools was being displayed at PMA for National Youth Art Month.

More recently, Brennan was honored as Maine Art Educator of the Year at the Annual Convention of the National Art Education Association (NAEA) in San Diego. Closer to home, Brennan was recognized for her MAEA distinction with a certificate of recognition by the Wells-Ogunquit CSD School Committee on April 16th.

Presenting Brennan with her award at the Portland Museum of Art was MAEA President Heidi O’Donnell. “I truly want people to recognize that the application process for our Art Educator of the Year is incredibly rigorous,” commented O’Donnell. “And Sandy, without doubt, out of all the applicants, rose to the top of the list …and went above and beyond every standard in every category. And no other art teacher has done that.”

Brennan has taught at Wells Elementary School since 1974 and has worked hard to develop her outstanding art program. In 1979, she initiated a student exhibit at the Barn Gallery in Ogunquit showcasing artwork from grades K-12 for Southern York County. She helps organize it annually and it continues to be the Gallery's favorite show of the season. Sandy is a former Co-President and President of the MAEA. She has been described as a lifelong learner, and, last year received her second Master’s degree from Lesley University.

Brennan was nominated for this honor by fellow MAEA member Manon Lewis during a ceremony at the University of Maine’s Museum of Art in 2013. At that time, Brennan was being honored “for her years of dedication as an art teacher and advocate for arts education.”

“Sandy Brennan has been conducting business as MAEA’s President or Co-President for some 10 years, donating hours upon hours of her time to our professional organization,” commented Lewis in her nomination of Brennan. “I feel that it is high time that she receives praise and recognition for her professionalism and her dogged dedication to the Maine Art Education Association.”

Caption: Art teacher Sandy Brennan (left) with MAEA President Heidi O’Donnell at the Portland Museum of Art on March 8, 2014.