ďThe honor came as a complete surprise,Ē Janotta said from his office at the Paynesville Area High School.
Janotta has been secondary principal at Paynesville 17 years. He has worked in the education field 28 years and served as a principal 20 years. He came to Paynesville from Chokio/Alberta.
Janotta has served as a CMASSP officer in the past and was president in 1987. ďHis colleagues appreciate his thorough, easy-going style and the professional presence he brings to the principalship,Ē Steven Dooley, CMASSP secretary/treasurer from Albany, said.
ďHe is held in high esteem by his colleagues, evidenced by the number of nominations he received this year for Principal of the Year. Words such as courageous, dedicated, intelligent, caring and diplomatic were a few of the descriptions used in the nominations of John for this award. In his local district he is admired for his integrity and for the concern he shows for all students,Ē Dooley added.
Paynesville Superintendent Howard Caldwell said, ďJohn has been an outstanding leader of our high school program. He has been called on to guide us through troubled times as well as good times. Whichever it is, he is always a strong advocate for kids. He is not only a great principal, but he is a great person. I have the utmost confidence in him.Ē
Janotta enjoys being around kids and as a principal it provides him with the opportunity to see kids grow, learn, and graduate with more confidence and abilities in life than when they start high school.
ďWatching the students graduate is a satisfying thing as you see parents cut the ropes to let their kids be on their own,Ē Janotta said. ďI enjoy contact with people, especially young people. It is the exciting part of living...being around youth.Ē
ďBeing a principal is not a boring job,Ē Janotta said, ďno two days are the same, the unexpected is always there.Ē
The CMASSP is the largest division of secondary principals in the state and covers the area from Brainerd to Montevideo, to Anoka-Hennepin.
Janotta is a member of the National Secondary School Principals Association, Minnesota Association of Secondary School Principals, Central Minnesota Association of Secondary School Principals, Paynesville American Legion, St. Louis Catholic Church and the Koronis Hills Golf Club where he has served as president for 15 years.
In his free time, Janotta has referreed junior high basketball games in Paynesville, he enjoys jogging and playing golf. He does golf club repair as a hobby, as well as reading.
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