Lynn Marie Hilleary, 4th Grade Teacher, Brownsville Elementary School
Where were you born (and raised, if different)?
I was born in Georgetown Hospital, Washington D.C. and raised a fifth generation Arlingtonian, just two miles from D.C with my 6 siblings and extensive family.
When and why did you move to the Charlottesville/Albemarle area?
In 1986 I moved to Schuyler with my husband, Leonard Deane Myrtle, when he inherited the homestead which had been owned by his family since the early 1800’s.
What neighborhood do you live in now?
I live for the most part in Nelson County, VA on the side of Three Ridges Mountain. I have a beautiful ride when I go shopping, as the quickest route to town is along the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Family (spouse, kids, etc.)?
The love of my life, who I met at the age of 19, Lenny Myrtle, and who sadly passed away in 2006. And I have two beautiful children who inherited his gorgeous blue eyes, Rebecca (age 29) and Nicholas (age 25). I loved my maiden name and changed it back to Hilleary after Lenny’s death. It wasn’t popular until Hilary Rodham Clinton arrived on the scene.
What is your alma mater and when did you graduate?
I graduated from Virginia Tech in 1976 with a B.A. in Elementary Education, and then returned to receive my Master’s of Education in Curriculum & Instruction. I am endorsed as a classroom teacher NK-7, Reading Specialist K-12, and Principal K-12.
What is your favorite part of classroom teaching?
My favorite part of teaching is just being with children. They keep me young in mind and are exceptionally fun!
What is your favorite example of a rewarding experience you’ve had in the field of education?
There have been so many rewarding experiences in the classroom and with students coming back to visit or writing to me years after they leave my classroom. Winning the Golden Apple this year was a great accolade.
Why did you choose to teach?
I entered Virginia Tech to become a veterinarian, but during college vacations I often lived with my older sister, who is a Reading Specialist in Fauquier County. Spending so much with her in the classroom and helping her plan lessons, it appeared teaching was so rewarding that I just got hooked being with the children.
If you had to pick one, what do you think is the single most important issue facing the public schools today?
I am very concerned regarding the SOL testing and assessments we must do; the rigor increases every year. It does not allow time for children to be creative in their own ways in the classroom.
What is a little-known fact about you?
A little known fact regarding me is that It is necessary for people to relocate often in these times. The Hillearys have lived in the Washington, D.C. area since the mid 1600s coming from Scotland. My ancestors served in every war for freedom since the French & Indian War.
What do you do outside of work hours – hobbies, etc.?
As far as hobbies, I spend most of my free time reading. History, realistic fiction, mysteries, & westerns are what interest me the most. Elmore Leonard is favorite author but my favorite book of all time is “Lonesome Dove”; I bet I have watched the movie over 50 times.