Dr. Winn Murnin Elementary School

It's no accident that the students and staff at Dr. Winn Murnin Elementary selected a Mariner to be the school mascot. Dr. Winn Murnin is the epitome of a mariner, always setting sail in a new direction and always providing guidance to the ship.

In a career at Northside that spanned two decades, Murnin made an impact at every level, from pre-k to 12th grade.

She began her career at Northside in the 1970s as a math teacher at Holmes High School, and went on to serve as assistant principal at Clark High School and principal at Leon Valley Elementary and Stevenson Middle School.

After moving to central office to be the Director of Secondary Education, she became Northside's first female Assistant Superintendent in 1990, when she was promoted to oversee curriculum and instruction.

Throughout her career at Northside, Murnin set high expectations for both students and staff, but she practiced what she preached. She finished high school at 15, and as remarkable as that may seem, she got her first teaching job at 18 after she graduated from Thomas More College, even though she technically was too young to be a teacher.

And in 1989, just a few years before she planned to retire, the life-long learner went back to school to earn a doctorate from Texas A&M University.

While at Northside, she fostered a climate of cooperation, humor and mutual respect, and always put students and staff first, say the many colleagues she mentored. She developed innovative programs, like the Academic Fair, Independent Study Mentorship for gifted and talented students, and the EXCEL math program for secondary schools.

Murnin retired from the District in 1994 to serve as Director of Student Teaching at the University of Texas at San Antonio, and 12 years ago, she opened her own business, Winn Estate Services.

She has served on the boards of several community groups, including the Alzheimer's Association, and has been honored by numerous organizations and businesses, including the American Mensa Research and Education Foundation, the American Association of School Administrators, and the San Antonio Express-News.

Murnin's proudest achievement, though, she says, is her family, which includes five children, seven step-children, and 13 grandchildren.