July 12, 2020

Jeanne Delaura is Lyme-Old Lyme Schools ‘Employee of the Year’

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Employee of the Year Jeanne Delaura stands with LOL Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser after her award was announced.

LYME-OLD LYME — Noting that he, “Couldn’t think of anyone more deserving for this recognition,” Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser announced at the Convocation gathering of all administrators, faculty and staff held Aug. 26, that his Administrative Assistant Jeanne Delaura had been selected as the LOL Schools Employee of the Year.

He described Delaura’s long and stellar career with Regional District 18 mentioning that she started work for the district back in 1991, thanks to information received from her brother-in-law, former LOL Schools Athletic Director Rob Roach, who had told Delaura about the job opening. Neviaser further noted that thanks to her longevity with LOL Schools, Delaura possesses a unrivaled wealth of knowledge about the district.

Despite this vast wisdom, he said she never stops learning new skills, having taken on matters including the development and management of the acclaimed Region18.org website, handling numerous complex legal issues, managing the AESOP software (which tracks teacher absences), and controlling the administration of all legal and personnel contracts.

Neviaser commented that one of Delaura’s well-known sayings in Central Office is, “You don’t have to be smart, you just have to be organized,” but said, although he agrees unequivocally that Delaura is exceptionally organized, “She just happens to be very smart too.” He also noted that Delaura has a sixth sense when it comes to people — she knows almost immediately who will stay the course and who will fall by the wayside. 

Adding that she is an, “Amazing mother to two lovely young ladies,” Neviaser commented on Delaura’s unflappable and pleasant personality, remarking that she is, “always smiling, even when dealing with people who are clearly not feeling like smiling.”

A slightly nervous and very humble Delaura accepted the award with a short but powerful speech. She explained that 28 years ago, “a very, very kind man,” then LOL Schools Superintendent Julius “(Jules) d’Agostino took a chance on me knowing full well that I did not have any experience of working for a school district.” Despite that surprising start, Delaura said firmly, “Accepting that offer was one of the best decisions I have made.”

Delaura continued, “I love my job here — it is because of the wonderful people that surround me here. Lyme-Old Lyme is a very special place where kindness and generosity are commonplace. The bar is set very high and I feel so lucky to be a part of it.”

Delaura then turned to her current boss and said, “I would be remiss for not recognizing my now fifth superintendent. Ian, I’m so proud to be a part of your Central Office team. You are the “Super” of my superintendents!” (After d’Agostino, Delaura’s superintendents were, in order, Jefferson Prestridge, David Klein, Elizabeth Osga and then Neviaser — she also worked under Dr. John Whritner when he was interim superintendent on two separate occasions.)

Still addressing Neviaser, she added to roars of laughter, “Also, I thank you for getting the heck out of my way every day and letting me do my job,” but then added in a serious tone, “I will always have your back.”

Delaura was extremely appreciative of her award thanking the audience, “for recognizing me today so warmly,” and expressing her hope that “… this school year is a wonderful one for all of you.”



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