Washington High School counselor Katie Sandoval recently was named the South Central Missouri School Counselor Association High School Counselor of the Year.

Sandoval, who has been with the Washington School District for 16 years, was recognized during the South Central MSCA Awards Ceremony Friday, April 5, in the Confluence Room at Four Rivers Career Center.

“It’s a huge honor,” she said. “I am so grateful for the team I get to work with at Washington High School.”

Sandoval was nominated for the award separately by both WHS Principal Dr. Kelle McCallum and Assistant Principal Mary Kleekamp.

“Ms. Sandoval is an excellent example of a student advocate,” McCallum stated on the nomination form.

“She is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to school processes,” McCallum said. “She works diligently to understand the position of the stakeholders’ opinions she must balance in order to guide a conversation that results in the most appropriate result for student success.

“In addition to her counseling work, Sandoval is seen as a trusted adviser to parents, teachers and administrators. She makes work fun and engaging. Everyone should hope for someone of Katie’s caliber on their team.”

Kleekamp said Sandoval has taken charge on the ACT, both national and state testing, and is extremely thorough in all aspects of the job.

“She is the perfect amount of fun-loving and professional, and she is a serious advocate for her students and colleagues,” Kleekamp said. “Katie always jumps in to help whenever an extra hand is needed. She has taken on the extra duty of helping supervise after-school events, allowing her to see and support her students in a different light.”