One of Rim Country’s longtime educators, Kathe Ketchem, has joined the Arizona Rural Schools Association (ARSA) Hall of Fame.
Ketchem attended the ARSA conference with a host of Payson educators including the Gila County Teacher of the Year Halli Kinnick, past Arizona Rural Teacher of the Year Marlene Armstrong, Ketchem’s former vice-principal Anna Van Zile and former PUSD Superintendent Casey O’Brien and current Superintendent Ron Hitchcock.
“It was an honor,” said Ketchem. “There are some really great names of educators in the ARSA Hall of Fame.”
Ketchem spent 41 years in education, 35 of them in the Rim Country.
She taught kindergarten through high school and even taught undergraduate classes in reading, literature and curriculum in the Payson area as an adjunct professor for Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University.
Ketchem was also active in ARSA serving as its secretary and president.
Kiwanis recognized her as the Teacher of the Year in 1990. She also received Teacher of the Year awards from Pine and its chamber of commerce and the Payson Jaycees.
In 1995 she was the first rural teacher in Arizona to be named as an Arizona Teacher of the Year Ambassador.
Ketchem said what made the ceremony fun and special was the Rim Country group that attended with her.