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Mary Helen Sandoval Receives Recognition for Service

Posted on May 1, 2019, by Loretto Community

Members of Mary Helen Sandoval’s family gather at her recognition ceremony at the Colorado High School Charter. Back row, from left, are Kelvin Reed, Andrea Sandoval Reed, Mary Helen Sandoval, Amanda Sandoval and Ariel Sandoval Reed. Front row, from left, are Malia Sandoval Reed and Aziza Halpern Sandoval.(Photo by Jackie Coppola)
Members of Mary Helen Sandoval’s family gather at her recognition ceremony at the Colorado High School Charter. Back row, from left, are Kelvin Reed, Andrea Sandoval Reed, Mary Helen Sandoval, Amanda Sandoval and Ariel Sandoval Reed. Front row, from left, are Malia Sandoval Reed and Aziza Halpern Sandoval. (Photo by Jackie Coppola)

Recently, Mary Helen Sandoval received stellar recognition for her tireless efforts with Colorado High School Charter (CHSC).

Mary Helen  has served on the Board of Colorado High School Charter for 15 years. In 1994 her dear friend, Cyndi Bush Luna, founded CHSC with the mission of creating a pathway for students who had dropped out of comprehensive high schools.

Exterior of Colorado High School Charter (Photo by Aziza Halpern Sandoval)
Exterior of Colorado High School Charter (Photo by Aziza Halpern Sandoval)

In 2004 Colorado High School Charter was named one of Denver’s first charter schools and continued to serve students who had not experienced success in other traditional high school settings. CHSC is small and tailors to students’ individual and collective needs, which helps provide highly impacted teens an opportunity for both academic and social emotional achievement. The students, predominantly people of color, have been embedded in generational poverty, and many are first-generation high school graduates.

The cafeteria was named in her honor in appreciation of her work for the school. The lunchroom is called the Mary Helen Sandoval Café.

Mary Helen steadfastly has volunteered at the CHSC from its inception. When CHSC became a charter school, Mary Helen was elected to the board of directors and served as the original chairperson for myriad years. She has continued in service to the school for well over a decade in various capacities.

From left are Colorado High School Charter Principal Jackie Coppola and the charter school’s construction instructor Miguel Rivera. (Photo by Mary Helen Sandoval)
From left are Colorado High School Charter Principal Jackie Coppola and the charter school’s construction instructor Miguel Rivera. (Photo by Mary Helen Sandoval)

Last year a second satellite campus was added to the portfolio of CHSC, which is located in a historic warehouse. Mary Helen served on the building committee and worked closely with the executive director, the architect and the contractors in imagining, developing and opening the new school.

The cafeteria was named in her honor in appreciation of her work for the school. The lunchroom is called the Mary Helen Sandoval Café.

She is delighted by the distinguished recognition, and she believes her sustained vision of the school will continue to have great impact on lives for generations to come.

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