FAIRFIELD, Conn. -- Two Fairfield Country Day School music teachers, Mary Nelson and Jim Balmer, were recently recognized and honored by Stanford University as part of their Teacher Tribute Initiative.
Stanford created the Teacher Tribute Initiative to recognize significant contributions from teachers and mentors. Over the summer, all members of Stanford’s incoming freshmen class were given the opportunity to acknowledge one former teacher or mentor who played a significant role in their intellectual, academic, social, and personal development.
Former Country Day student and Stanford freshman Russell Clarida honored Nelson and Balmer by offering the following tribute: “The duo of James Balmer and Mary Nelson spent years helping me to develop tangible skills, such as performing lines and songs as the lead in the Music Man or as an actor in the background of Grease, but most of all what they truly nurtured was my sense of self-confidence. Whether in bell choir, orchestra, piano lessons, choir tours, or late nights before the play, they taught me that hard work, dedication, respect, and honesty are qualities that a true man of character should embody.”
During Headmaster John Munro’s presentation of this outstanding recognition, he said that the most rewarding part of his job is when he receives notes from parents and alumni about the impact Country Day teachers have had on their lives.