Jack Viorel, the 2010-2011 recipient of the Monsignor Gerald Lawrence Lewis Award for Excellence in Teaching, was recognized by the docu-series, The Hero Effect, sponsored by United Way. The episode aired in August on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).
“The Hero Effect tells stories of ordinary individuals who are making an extraordinary difference in their communities.”
Co-host of The Hero Effect and Former NFL player, Don Driver
Mr. Viorel taught First Grade at St. Mary Catholic School in Wilmington when he received the Lewis Award. He left classroom teaching to operate a surf school, but not just any surf school, Indo Jax Surf School and charity program has given free surf camps for thousands of special needs children locally in North Carolina and around the world. His programs serve needy children ranging from orphan girls in India to children with all types of impairments. Although he has taken on a very different classroom Mr. Viorel continues to live out the teaching philosophy he followed at St. Mary.
“Children can’t reach their fullest potential to positively affect and improve the world without the strong moral values. Teaching allows me to fulfill what is the most important value we can teach our children: how to live following Christ’s example. I use the teachings of Christ to lead my students to:
- Keep their eyes open to see how they can help others.
- Keep their ears open to hear those in need.
- Keep their hands ready to help others.”