Hillsborough mayor recognizes five educators awarded 2021-22 Governor’s Educators of the Year


Five Hillsborough educators were recently recognized as Governor’s Teachers or Educational Services Professionals for the 2021-22 school year.

Mayor Shawn Lipani presented a proclamation to the five educators at a Township Committee meeting in May.

D’Anna Barbaro is a social worker at Hillsborough Elementary School.

She is a case manager for the self-contained behavioral disabilities program and provides counseling/social skills groups for high need students, according to her proclamation.

Jessica Banas is a special education teacher at Auten Road Intermediate School. She has been teaching special education for four years as a learning and/or language disabilities mild teacher and is a drama club advisor, according to her proclamation.

Erin Chung is a special education teacher at Hillsborough Elementary School. She has taught special education for 15 years and helped start the iRun Club at the middle school. She has achieved her master’s degree in special education.

She is also certified in yoga and brings mindfulness and yoga practices into her classroom, according to her proclamation.

Ian Evans is a seventh-grade literacy teacher at Hillsborough Middle School.

He has taught seventh grade literacy for 10 years and is a co-advisor for the Club for Anti-Racist and Equitable School, CARES, promoting justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in school and the community, according to his proclamation.

Evans has also been the advisor for Writers House, a creative writing workshop, is active in the school mentoring program and has trained teachers on methods of bystander intervention, according to his proclamation.

Joan Murphy is a fifth-grade learning and/or language disability teacher at the Auten Road Intermediate School and has been in the position for 14 years.

She is on the Pride Committee for the Hillsborough Educational Association and a union representative, according to her proclamation.

The New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE) strives to recognize educators who have gone above and beyond in their service to New Jersey’s students. The Governor’s Educator of the Year program honors the hardworking teachers and educational services professionals for their dedication to students and the profession, according to its website.