NORTH PLATTE, Neb. Family, friends, staff and members of the administration gathered to celebrate Eisenhower Elementary Principal Mary Derby's accomplishments Friday afternoon.
Derby was chosen as 2018's National Distinguished Principal for the state of Nebraska.
She is one of five principal's in the state to be nominated for the award.
"I'm just thankful," Derby said. "I'm thankful for coming to school everyday and to have the job that I have and to be able to work with the people that I have, it just fills my heart."
Every year, the Nebraska Association of Elementary School Principal's selects a recipient for the award.
"You know walking into Eisenhower Elementary today I could tell right away why Mary received this award," said NAESP President Jason Callahan. "She embodies love of students and a love for education and that's really where she shines."
Derby has thirty-three years of experience in education. Twenty-one of those she's served as principal.
"You know this is our fourth staff member of the year to be recognized and distinguished over the last three years and Mrs. Derby is well deserving of this special recognition." said North Platte Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Ron Hanson. "And what an honor not only for North Platte, but for the state of Nebraska to have a representative go to Washington D.C. and be recognized as the national principal of the year."