Tonight, PCF is thrilled to celebrate veteran teacher and dedicated volunteer Ann Godesky for her many contributions to the Pawling community.
Ann grew up on Long Island as the youngest of four. She had an interest in art from a young age, and the nearby ocean provided endless inspiration. While at the College of Mount St. Vincent in Riverdale, Ann became enamored with the Hudson Valley. After graduating with a degree in art and a minor in art education, Ann applied for a variety of jobs – including a temporary position at Pawling High School teaching art while Mrs. Utter was on maternity leave.
What started as a temporary job at age 22 turned into a full-time teaching position that lasted 41 years. Ann retired in 2012 after decades as a beloved art teacher and mentor for countless students. Ann was a finalist for New York Teacher of the Year in 1999. She also holds a Masters Degree in Special Education from Manhattan College. She started the AP Studio Art and Graphics programs at Pawling High School. She also served as the Athletic Director from 2002-2004, managing over 40 teams (and introducing ice hockey!) while working as a full-time teacher.
Ann’s energy emanated in and outside the classroom, and her spirit of volunteerism continues to extend far beyond its walls. In 1989, Pawling received a training grant to implement a substance abuse prevention program. This led to the Peer Leadership pro-gram that focuses on school and community service and is very near and dear to Ann’s heart.
Soon after she began consulting for the Northeast Regional Center for Drug Free Schools & Communities. In her free time, Ann traveled to school districts offering guidance on how to establish sub-stance abuse prevention programs. In her time leading the Peer Leadership program, it grew from 10 to 160 students, empowering students and families to create tailored programs to address their needs.
Ann has served the community so many ways. She consulted for Lakeside Park, served on the board of Pawling Public Radio, and was Chair of the Dutchess County Youth Board. She continues to serve on the boards of the PCF, the Rotary Club (where she also served as President), and the Pawling Resource Center (where she serves as co-chair). Ann is also a member of ArtEast, which show-cases local artists.
Ann is a prolific painter working in oil and watercolors. She’ll say that inspiration is all around her. But we are the ones inspired by her. Thank you Ann, for enriching our lives and our community.
October 8, 2022