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Anne Murr named 'My Favorite Teacher' by Des Moines ABC TV affiliate

September 22, 2008
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ABC5 News Anchor Chris Flanagan interviews Anne Murr about the "My Favorite Teacher" award and her experience with adult literacy student Steven Pritchard.

Anne Murr, coordinator of the Drake University Adult Literacy Center, today was presented with the "My Favorite Teacher" award by ABC5 News/WOI-TV. Students and citizens may nominate a favorite teacher for the award, which recognizes Central Iowa's best teachers.

"If we didn't have Anne, I don't think we'd have the Drake University Adult Literacy Center," said Steven Pritchard, 45, of Des Moines who nominated Murr for the award. "She doesn't have to do any of the things she does, but she does because she cares."

Pritchard, an adult literacy student, his wife, Michelle, and members of the ABC5 News crew gathered Sept. 22 at Drake's School of Education to surprise Murr with the award. The story aired at 10 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 24, on WOI-TV.

"I'm just flabbergasted," said Murr, who's been with Drake for 32 years. "This is quite an honor."

After the award was presented, Murr said, "Leave no adult behind." Pritchard echoed her statement and said it couldn't have been put any better.


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Steven Pritchard and Anne Murr

"I get to hear everyone's story and I see such dedicated adults," Murr said. "Steven is a special person."

When Pritchard got involved in Drake's program taking adult literacy classes and meeting with tutors two years ago, he was reading at a fifth or sixth grade level.

A few years later, Pritchard wrote his first book, "Lovers of the Flood." His second book, "Disabled Thoughts," is scheduled to be finished in November. He will present readings from the book on Monday, Dec. 1, at Barnes and Noble in West Des Moines.