School board member Sharon Wallin honored with prestigious education award

IUSD school board member Sharon Wallin has earned the Orange County School Boards Association’s highest honor – the prestigious Marian Bergeson Award.

Sharon Wallin, left, accepts the Marian Bergeson Award from the honor’s namesake.

Established in 1974, the Marian Bergeson Award is annually presented to trustees who promote and enhance public education through their governing board service and community efforts. Past Irvine recipients include Lee Sicoli (1983), Mary Ellen Hadley (1993) and Margie Wakeham (1998). 

Wallin, who is serving her third term on the IUSD Board of Education, was informed she had joined that distinguished list on Wednesday night at the OCSBA’s annual meeting, which was held at the Irvine Marriott. Meg Cutuli, a school board member from Los Alamitos, was also recognized.

“Each recipient demonstrates exemplary dedication and commitment to their school district and community,” said Marian Bergeson, who personally presented the awards. “It is an honor to recognize these two individuals for their caring attitude and strong leadership.”

Bergeson knows a thing or two about strong leadership, having been a member of the California State Assembly, the California State Senate and the Orange County Board of Supervisors. The award’s namesake is also a former state Secretary of Education.

Wallin has been a passionate advocate for public education for nearly 30 years, generously volunteering her time and resources while addressing issues of local, state and national importance. Since joining the IUSD Board of Education in 2002, she has furthered her reputation as an approachable leader and a problem-solver, one whom colleagues frequently turn to for the latest information on state funding, new legislation, curriculum and emergency preparedness.