Teachers and Education Service Professionals of the Year

Teachers and Education Service Professionals of the Year
Photo: Teachers of the Year Corin Gamgort (left) and Christopher Nilsen (right)

We are pleased to announce the 2023-2024 Teachers and Educational Services Professionals of the year for Pascack Hills and Pascack Valley High Schools! This year, we recognize Ms. Corin Gamgort (Pascack Hills Business Education Teacher) and Mr. Christopher Nilsen (Pascack Valley Science Teacher) as our Teachers of the Year. Our Educational Service Professionals of the Year are Ms. Jennifer Zimmermann (Pascack Hills Student Assistant Counselor) and Ms. Stephanie DiStasi (Pascack Valley Guidance Counselor).


While these outstanding professionals will be recognized formally at a future Board of Education meeting, we encourage you to find photos of them below as well as quotes that were included in nomination submissions that best describe the character of the recipients and their impact on our school community.

Congratulations to our Teachers and Education Services Professionals of the Year!


Ms. Corin Gamgort

Pascack Hills Business Education Teacher

Photo: Class photo with Ms. Gamgort in the middle of her students holding flowers.
Photo: Ms. Corin Gamgort, center holding a bouquet of flowers, surrounded by her students.


“Corin consistently gives her heart and soul to Pascack Hills. She provides meaningful and enriching lessons in her classes, goes out of her way to help students struggling, helps out at as many sporting events as she can, and manages multiple leadership positions outside of the classroom such as organizing fundraisers, Advising DECA and multiple other clubs. She never hesitates to help or to make sure no one falls in between the cracks. Her warmth and dedication to this school needs to be acknowledged. ” - Colleague


“Ms. Gamgort is an amazing teacher that supports all of her students and is a great asset to the school community. Despite her extremely busy schedule having 6 classes and running 4 clubs she manages to come to school every day with passion for business and helping her students learn. During my time at Pascack Hills Ms. Gamgort has always made me feel supported in her classes. She makes each and everyone of her students feel like they matter and even when she is busy she still takes time to individualize her lessons to cater to her different students' needs.” - Student


Mr. Christopher Nilsen

Pascack Valley Science Teacher

Photo: Class photo with Mr. Nilsen in the center of his students holding a bouquet of flowers
Photo: Mr. Christopher Nilsen, center holding a bouquet of flowers, surrounded by his students.


"I believe that Nilsen forms a rapport with each and every one of his students, making his classes enjoyable for everyone. He always has interesting stories to tell, which he incorporates into his lessons. He is very good at teaching a difficult course, [as] he explains complex topics at an understandable level.” - Student


“I feel that Mr. Nilsen's expertise in chemistry allows him to give his students a thorough and detailed learning experience. He always wants the best for his students.” - Student


Ms. Jennifer Zimmermann

Pascack Hills Student Assistance Counselor

Photo: Jennifer Zimmermann in the center, holding a bouquet of flowers, surrounded by colleagues
Photo: Ms. Jennifer Zimmerman, center holding a bouquet of flowers, surrounded by colleagues.


“Jen Zimmermann has transformed our School Counseling Department.  Within the department, Jen has brought a sense of positivity, resilience, relatability, and above all else, a WEALTH of knowledge in the field of mental health. I nominate Jen not only because I believe she absolutely deserves it, but I also want her to know that I and all of her colleagues appreciate and see the hard work that she puts in day in and day out that rarely receives any admiration or recognition.  I am proud to call her a colleague, and more importantly, a friend.” - Colleague


“Mrs. Zimmermann is very caring and understanding. Her warm and welcoming personality helps make everyone she meets very comfortable.” - Student


Ms. Stephanie DiStasi

Pascack Valley Guidance Counselor

Photo: Stephanie DiStasi, center, surrounded by administration
Photo (l-to-r): Dr. Barry Bachenheimer, Mr. John Puccio, Ms. Aly Petaccia, Ms. Stephanie DiStasi, Dr. Sean Struncis, Mr. Tom Gallione


"[Ms.] DiStasi does an outstanding job at giving the most support she can. She frequently checks up on her students and is always looking to offer help and resources when needed. She shows genuine interest in helping her students thrive, and takes it even further by running PV Pals in hopes to make the freshman feel more welcome in our community.” - Student


“While I don't have [Ms.] Distasi as my guidance counselor, I do work very close with her on the Class Council. For the last three years that I have been on council, she has sacrificed her own time to make sure that everything ran smoothly, whether it was a fundraiser or just a meeting. Distasi works so hard to help our class with everything. She has also helped me in times of need. Whenever I have a problem either within the council or with other things, she [makes] sure that I know that I can always talk to her. Distasi has time and time again shown that she is selfless and caring and that's why I think she should receive this award.” - Student

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