Laramie's Second-grade teacher, Jeanne Van Heule has been selected as the first recipient for the Dick and Jane Baking Company's Teacher of the Year.

According to Dick Held, Co-Founder & President of Dick & Jane Baking Company says Jeanne Van Heule was the inaugural winner of the award. Held went onto say the award was given to Van Heule because of her achievements in nutritional education with her class along with services at St. Laurence O'Toole Elementary School. Held said "we started this company with educating children with eating the right thing when they started kindergarten and we wanted to give back to the teachers in our  teacher appreciation week and Jeanne was the best we saw out there." Held adds "we see little toddlers throw their cheerios around on the plate and then move up to animal crackers where they learn about different kinds of animals, but then when kindergarten hits, they don't learn anything else. That was our light-bulb moment that we could make a difference and shape educational items as food snacks so kids can eat healthy and fulfill their educational needs at the same time."

Dick went onto say "as Jeanne won award, she will receive $250.00 to be used in educational supplies and supply them with three cases of our educational snacks, one in states and capitals, presidents, and our new bilingual edition in english and spanish." Held says Van Huele credits the amazing staff, wonderful parents and awesome students. “We all work as a family with great results,” says Van Heule.

Held gives a lot of credit as well to his wife and co-founder Jane Held as she is a First-grade teacher in Michigan and educates her kids with healthy snacks and a enlightening educational experience at the same time. Held says "we go around the state of Detroit supplying schools with healthy educational snacks and now are trying to venture out around the world to do the same thing." According to Held, him and Jane have been married since 1986 and have carried this business since essentially knowing each other. Held added since this was the first year of the award, "we only promoted it on our facebook page and website, but we are looking to expand it in the future."



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