There is no doubt 25 years of teaching experience helped to land Bridgeforth Middle School’s 2020 Teacher of the Year award in the hands of Citizen Lori Herd. With 21 of those years spent at BMS, Herd is an asset to her school, students, colleagues and the educational system.
Herd received her Bachelor of Science degree at Tennessee Tech University, then continued her education at Tennessee State University, where she earned her master’s and Educational Specialist degree in Administration. She began her career as a kindergarten teacher at Pulaski Elementary for two years and then taught fourth grade for two years in Nashville, before returning home to Pulaski to teach at BMS.
“I have wanted to become a teacher as long as I can remember,” Herd said. “Of course, I always envisioned myself teaching younger children, and I have ended up teaching older ones.”
Bridgeforth Middle School Assistant Principal Mark Cardin is grateful to have Herd at his school.
“Lori Herd represents everything good about public education,” Cardin said. “She is a great teacher who has the unique ability to be stern, rigorous and fun all at the same time.”
All these attributes can be seen in Herd’s teaching philosophy.
“My teaching strategy is to ‘hear’ the children, to treat them all the same, to respect them all and let them all know that they are equal in my classroom and have a voice,” Herd explained.
“Mrs. Herd does an outstanding job of building relationships with her students and seeing things through the students’ perspective,” Cardin added.
When Herd isn’t in the classroom, she loves to spend time with her family and friends and support her children’s sporting events.
“I am married to a wonderful husband, Johnny Herd, and we have three awesome children,” Herd said.
Anna Grace began her third year at University of Tennessee-Chattanooga this fall, John Parker began his second year at Columbia State Community College and Heath is a senior at Giles County High School, where he is a member of the golf and baseball teams.
“Beyond the classroom, Mrs. Herd is always willing to go the extra mile to support her students and co-workers,” Cardin said. “For as long as I have known Mrs. Herd, the teacher, she has always been a major cheerleader for our school and system. Simply put, Lori Herd makes Bridgeforth Middle School a better place to learn and work.