Timberlake Public School welcomed six new staff members to the school this year.
The new hires included Taylor Hedrick, DeeDee Johnson, Jeremy Hickman, Mary Hill, Jeannessa McCollum and Christy Wallace.
Taylor Hedrick will be teaching seventh and eighth grade math and geometry. She will also be the head junior high and high school girls’ basketball coach.
She is originally from Seiling, where she graduated high school. Hedrick then obtained her degree from Southwestern Oklahoma State University.
When asked what led her to Timberlake, Hedrick said, “I have a huge passion for the game of basketball and was ready to venture out and try building something somewhere else on my own. It was also very convenient that they had a math teacher position open, because that was what I previously taught at Seiling Schools and I enjoyed it.”
She is the daughter of Bryan and Jasmine Hedrick and has one brother, Brock.
Taylor’s favorite part of teaching is her students and players. She enjoys interacting with them, learning from them and helping them understand the content. She also loves to see the connections of the things they’re learning and their daily lives. She enjoys having the opportunity to inspire and educate the future, and to create and build relationships with them.
Her hobbies are being outdoors, going to the lake, fishing, hunting and spending time with friends and family.
DeeDee Johnson will be teaching math.
She is originally from Helena and graduated from Timberlake High School. Johnson then obtained a degree in mathematics and secondary education mathematics, an associate in science in mathematics at Northern Oklahoma College and a masters of education in curriculum and instruction from Northwestern Oklahoma State University.
When asked what led her to Timberlake, Johnson said, “Teaching at Timberlake allows me to be back home. I’ve taught at Northern Oklahoma College both full and part time and have enjoyed the collegiate experience. I’ve also taught for two years in a step out math program at Autry Technology Center and enjoyed the Career Tech experience. I am happy to be back home where I can work with students within my own community.”
She is married to Curtis and they have two daughters, Brooklyn and Courtney, and two sons, Cole and Bearett.
DeeDee’s favorite part of teaching is, “Teaching for me is a completion of what I like to do in life. I’ve taught for 13 years in full or part time capacities. I was able to teach online for NOC while my children were babies and I enjoyed the experience, but needed back into the classroom. In person interaction is hard to beat when you are teaching students math. I enjoy helping students see the benefit of learning mathematical skills as well as empowering them to realize they can understand concepts.”
With four children and a husband who farms, DeeDee said personal hobbies rarely exist. But when they do have time she enjoys reading, golfing, going to the lake and camping with her family in the mountains.
Jeremy Hickman will be the elementary principal and elementary basketball coach.
He is originally from Cherokee, where he graduated high school. Hickman then obtained a degree from Northwestern Oklahoma State University and a master’s from Southwestern Oklahoma State University.
When asked what led him to Timberlake, Hickman said, “I was excited for the opportunity to lead young people, and stay in northwest Oklahoma. Timberlake has had a long history of excellence in education.”
Hickman and his wife Megan have two daughters, Holly and Jade.
Jeremy’s favorite part of teaching is watching young people grow, and becoming successful adults. He also enjoys the energy students bring to school daily.
His hobbies are reading, farming and spending time with family.
Mary Hill will be teaching elementary music and junior high and high school band and vocal.
She is originally from Edmond and graduated from Edmond North High School. Hill then obtained her degree in music education from the University of Oklahoma.
When asked what led her to Timberlake, Hill said, “In March 2021, I married my husband, Weston Hill, who lives outside of Carmen. Originally, I applied for an opening for FACS at the junior high and high school, but then an opening for the junior high and high school band and vocal position opened shortly after I applied for FACS. My husband has been working at Gateway First Bank since February 2020, so I have become more familiar with the community.”
Mary and husband Weston live outside of Carmen with their dog Rebel.
Her favorite part of teaching is having a special role being a music teacher, because she gets to watch the process of her students growing all throughout their years in school until they graduate. This will be her first year teaching elementary music, versus teaching band sixth through 12th grade, and she is eager to start this new endeavor in her career. The thought of having students for 12 consecutive years is exciting for her.
Mary enjoys playing piano, drums and other percussion instruments and painting. She is excited to go to University of Oklahoma football games and to start going to more concerts and possibly Oklahoma City Thunder games again.
Jeannessa McCollum will be teaching Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) and Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA).
She is originally from Helena and graduated high school from Timberlake High School. McCollum then obtained bachelors and masters from Oklahoma State University.
When asked what led her to Timberlake, McCollum said, “Teaching FCS and being FCCLA advisor is my home in teaching. Teaching in my hometown where all our community efforts contribute to making the district where my children go to school a better place, well that’s just a no-brainer. Furthermore, Timberlake is an excellent district with a strong FCCLA program, so that helps a little.”
She is married to Lydel and they have two children, Piper and Liam.
Jeannessa’s favorite part of teaching is the impact she is allowed to have on students. She enjoys when she sees a student brighten up or blossom because of her class or her personal impact. She also enjoys when new understanding dawns on them or new skill develop.
“Students are with their teachers the majority of their day, that’s a hefty responsibility being able to help shape who they become,” Jeannessa said.
Christy Wallace will be the Lil Tiger Childcare Director.
She graduated from Cimarron High School and has been at Ringwood Elementary for the last 12 years. Wallace then obtained a bachelor’s in early childhood and elementary education and a master’s in school administration. Both came from Northwestern Oklahoma State University.
When asked what led her to Timberlake, Wallace said, “I love teaching in a small community, because I have the ability to see our students grow into young adults. Since I have past experience in childcare, this was a great opportunity to help the school district implement one within the district.”
She is married to Brad and they have seven children, Brittney, Kynsie, Avery, Addy, Brody, Brentley and Benny.
Christy’s favorite part of education is being able to positively influence her students. She can help them build self-esteem and believe in themselves and their ability to learn.
Her hobbies are spending time with family and attending her children’s activities.