For her outstanding contributions as a Kindergarten through sixth grade teacher, Nancy is recognized on the Dons’ Wall of Fame by Village School Counselors of Emporia, Kansas.
Gelane M. Barr is a graduate of Manhattan High School and Kansas State University. Her first teaching position was fifth grade at Lee Elementary School in Manhattan where she taught for four years. She and her husband Bryan moved to Emporia when he accepted a position with the Emporia Veterinary Hospital. There she interrupted her teaching career to devote time to her sons, Lee and Wade. She had been active as a youth leader in Geary County 4-H and as a parent volunteer in Lyon County. Eight months abroad in the Far East as an International Farm Youth Exchange Student was an experience which gave her a love for travel and an appreciation for divergent peoples and cultures. Gelane is a member of the Messiah Lutheran Church where she has served as President of the Women’s Group and taught Mid-Week School, Sunday School, and Vacation Bible School. She has taught at Village Elementary School for sixteen years. While at Village, she has served on the Drug/Alcohol Team, the district Science Committee, and received a Certificate of Recognition for fifteen years of service. She was named Outstanding Young woman in 1976, and named to Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers in 1994.
Born and reared in the Flinthills of Kansas, Gelane has a special love for the rolling grassland and the plants, animals, birds, and people who live there. In her own quiet way, she has shared this passion with her students. She has a special touch with kids and critters. She can tame a colt or brush away the tears of a playground scrape with equal ease. She has continually collected nature’s interesting specimens to share with her students. Other teachers in her building love her enough to put up with escaped snakes and spiders, and have learned along with her students to see these animals as an important part of the ecology. She was a special way with students, using patience and praise to lift them toward their best work. Perhaps her greatest asset is her own personality. She is a loyal friend, a warm, accepting teacher, a loving wife and mother, and a wonderful person.
Gelane taught fourth grade at Village Elementary School in Emporia, Kansas for sixteen years. Gelane also taught fifth grade and has taught for twenty years.