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Aug 15, 2023

5 min. read

When Stephanie Pennesi retired in June after 31 years as a French teacher and librarian at Guelph’s June Avenue Public School, she left with more than just memories. Pennesi was recognized with the CAA School Safety Patrol Supervisor of the Year award for her role as a dedicated patrol safety advocate for the past 29 years.

Pennesi was nominated by Guelph Police officer, Sherry Pettapiece and teacher, Dianne Chadder for her years of dedicated service. Pennesi is described as someone who can always be counted on, and who always makes sure CAA School Safety Patrollers are wearing their vests, are on time and are conducting themselves in a safe manner. Over the years, she has demonstrated leadership by identifying potential issues and proactively working to correct them.

“I believe that Stephanie is the most dedicated safety patrol supervisor that has ever been involved in the program,” says Constable Sherry Pettapiece. “My partner once told me that each patrol team is only as strong as their patrol supervisor and when I think of Stephanie, I realise that this statement couldn't be more true.”

Stephanie’s long-term dedication as a patrol supervisor encouraged other teachers to join the safety patrol program.

As one of the longest serving patrol supervisors, Pennesi has inspired generations of students and fellow teachers to get involved in the program.

“I have been a safety patrol supervisor for 21 years and Stephanie is the reason,” says Dianne Chadder. “I saw first-hand how Stephanie built the June Avenue students into a reliable, cohesive safety patrol team. Stephanie is a very active patrol supervisor who always participates in the extra safety patrol activities and rewards offered by the Guelph Police and CAA. That means bringing safety patrols to a movie day or Guelph Storm hockey games on a weekend.”

This isn’t Pennesi’s first time being recognized. She was named the City of Guelph Patrol Supervisor of the Year in 2008 and again in 2016. For her achievement she receives a cheque for $1,000 CAD to be used towards their school’s CAA School Safety Patrol® program, a free one-year CAA Membership and a plaque of recognition.

“All this attention is very overwhelming, I am very grateful to my nominators for putting my name forward for this award,” says Stephanie Pennesi. “This is a great way to end the school year and my career here at June Avenue Public School.”

The CAA School Safety Patrol program is CAA’s oldest traffic safety initiative.

The CAA School Safety Patrol program has kept students safe in school zones since the 1920’s by assisting at school crossings and on school buses.

“The CAA School Safety Patrol program is CAA’s oldest traffic safety initiative, that teaches children life-long leadership skills on how to interact in a busy environment, with the confidence to be able to act in emergency situations,” says Teresa Di Felice, Assistant Vice President Government and Community Relations for CAA SCO. “The program would not be possible without its many community volunteers like Stephanie Pennesi who are dedicated road safety champions.”

Learn more about the CAA School Safety Patrol program and how to ensure safer school zones for everyone.

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