The Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints honored five Redlands Unified teachers during its recognition evening.

On Thursday, Feb. 27, a reception and awards ceremony was held to celebrate teachers that exemplify a commitment to education.

The five teachers honored were Beattie Middle School’s Jeff Hibbs, Redlands High School’s Joshua Murguia, Smiley Elementary’s Gerald Peplow, Arroyo Verde Elementary’s Rene Pereyra and McKinley Elementary’s Patty Ramirez. Citrus Valley junior Whitney Linton presented Hibbs his award.

Hibbs taught at Cope Middle School for 10 years before moving to Beattie. “I had Mr. Hibbs in eighth grade,” said Linton. “Students always looked forward to his end of the year barbecue.”

Former student Rachel Richey Memmot presented Murguia his award. Murguia is a Redlands Unified alumni who attended Clement Middle School and Redlands High.

“He pushed us to work harder and be better,” said Richey Memmot. “He genuinely believed in all of us and made learning fun.”

Rene Caballero, a Smiley volunteer, presented Peplow his award.

Peplow began his career at Smiley as a special education teacher before teaching fourth grade.

“Mr. Peplow had been at Smiley for his entire 20-year teaching career,” said Caballero.

“He is a teacher who promotes independence and instills love of life and learning in his students.”

Fellow teacher Kodie Sibbett presented Pereyra her award. Pereyra is a fifth-grade teacher who has been in education for 13 years.

“Ms. Pereyra is dedicated to motivating her students,” said Sibbett. “She is enthusiastic and always dresses up for spirit days.”

McKinley parent Amy Elkins presented Ramirez her award. Ramirez has been teaching for 13 years in Redlands.

“Ms. Ramirez cares for each student,” said Elkins. “Her favorite thing to see is when students try new things with positive outlooks.”