Whether she’s at school, church, or working with her own three children, Cindy Niederbaumer of Huron has one powerful message to share: You are here for a reason.
Niederbaumer, who is principal at James Valley Christian High School and also teaches English and Spanish, was awarded the SHE award for Tomorrow’s Leader.
“Teaching is beyond teaching them from a textbook,” Niederbaumer said. “I want to help them see beyond the lessons in the classroom to the life lessons and God’s plan for each of them in their lives.
“The main thing that I want them to know is that they were each created for a specific purpose,” she said. “There is a purpose and plan for each of them.”
A native of Akron, Iowa, Niederbaumer attended South Dakota State University, where she met her husband, Matt. A year after her graduation they got married and moved to Huron. Her husband is a native of the Iroquois area.
They have three children, a daughter, Belle, who is in fourth grade; and two sons, Jonah, in second grade, and Mauer, 3, and in preschool. All three attend JVCS.
She was a teacher at JVCS from 2004-2008, when she began work for the Huron School District as the ESL director. She returned to James Valley as the high school principal in 2012.
Niederbaumer said she is also active with youth at Mount Olivet Church, where she teaches Sunday school and AWANA.
There are three life lessons that she hopes to instill in young people that she works with — the first of which is helping young people realize they have a purpose.
“The main thing I want them to know is that they were each created for a specific purpose,” Niederbaumer said. “There is a purpose and plan for each of them.
“Another life lesson is how to respect and honor others,” she said. “There are going to be situations all through life where you will meet someone that you don’t necessarily agree with. But you need to be respectful of them and honor their position.”
The third, and equally important life lesson can be summed up in two simple words — be productive.
“We were put here to use our skills and talents to serve others,” Niederbaumer said. “It’s not about them, it’s about how to serve others.
“I just feel that I’ve been called to work with kids every day and that’s where I can have the biggest impact,” she added. “That’s what I put my time and energy into.”