By Austin Groshong
Ann Hoffman, Principal of Sacred Heart Catholic School, in Troy, was recently honored for her dedication to Catholic education.
Hoffman was awarded the St. Rose Philippine Duchesne Distinguished Principal of the Year award. Hoffman was one of 125 principals nominated to receive the award. The award is given annually to one elementary principal.
The award was presented in June at the annual Archdiocesan Principals’ Institute during Mass at the Rigali Center. Father Tom Wissler, pastor of Sacred Heart Parish, officiated at the Mass. The award was presented by Dr. Kurt Nelson, superintendent of Catholic Education.
“It is very humbling,” Hoffman said. “I am very honored to able to receive this.”
After being nominated by an anonymous person, Hoffman was required to write an essay describing her practices in spiritual, instructional, and administrative leadership. Hoffman received word that she received the award in March.
“When I submitted my essay, I said to myself ‘that is not award winning essay,’ so when they called me I cried because I didn’t think it was that good. So I am very humbled. I feel that I have a lot to learn. I’m not done and I know God is not done with me yet. I’ve got a lot more to go.”
Hoffman has been in Catholic education her entire career. After teaching in a number of schools in the St. Louis area, Hoffman came to Sacred Heart as a teacher in 1999. After teaching for six years there, she became assistant principal at Immaculate Conception in Dardaine Prairie. She served as principal at St. Charles Barromeo catholic grade school.
“I had no intention of leaving there,” recalls Hoffman. “But three years ago the previous principal at Sacred Heart,Sister Jeannette decided she wanted to do something else. So this (Sacred Heart) is my home parish anyway because I live here I thought I might as well try. I applied and I got it and this will be my third year at Sacred Heart as principal.”
Hoffman says that it is the people at Sacred Heart that has made her experience as principal so enjoyable.
“Sacred Heart is a family of people,” she said. “We work together as a family, we pray together as a family, we sort out our problems as a family and we support each other. I feel that we have fantastic faculty, we have great parents and students, our Parrish supports us. It’s just a great family feel.”