Two Minnesota Supreme Court justices offered keynote speeches to Anoka-Hennepin leadership during the district’s annual leadership workshop Aug. 10.
Current associate justice and 1975 Anoka High School graduate Margaret Chutich spoke first, discussing her experience as a product of the Anoka-Hennepin community and how her teachers played an important role in molding her into the person she is today.
She was followed by Alan Page, retired associate justice, who spoke about his childhood growing up in Canton, Ohio, and how he learned at an early age that “education creates hope” for children of all backgrounds.
Page retired from the bench in 2015, but remains active in the world of education, most notably through the Page Education Foundation, which provides much-needed financial and mentoring assistance to students of color in exchange for those students’ commitment to further volunteer service in the community.
This year, more than 20 Page Scholars came from Anoka-Hennepin’s high schools, including Matthew Kinfu and Maryan Hersi, two Anoka High School graduates who were on hand for Page’s appearance at the workshop, as was Lomumba Ismail, an Anoka High School social studies teacher and AHS alumni who was also a Page Scholar himself a few years ago.
Chutich, who was appointed to the Minnesota Supreme Court in 2016 by Gov. Mark Dayton and is the first openly gay justice on the Minnesota Supreme Court, talked about growing up in Anoka to parents who owned the hardware store downtown. Education was important to her, and her teachers were so influential that she still has regular lunch dates with her now-retired English teacher.
The leadership workshop is an annual event for district leadership where they learn about the School Board’s strategic priorities for the upcoming year and get excited and energized for the start of the school year. District leadership is invited to share and pass the messages of the day back to their employees.