Kimberly Herthel has been named Holmdel High School’s Teacher of the Year. She has been a member of the faculty for nine years and currently teaches grades 10 through 12 in U.S. History, Psychology and AP Art History.
Prior to entering the education field, she pursued a career in marketing. She graduated Rutgers University with bachelor’s degree in psychology and art history. Herthel went on to earn a Master of Social Studies Education at Rutgers Graduate School of Education.
She met her husband, Adam, through her dog, Lincoln. While at an outdoor restaurant, Lincoln, an overly friendly Shih Tzu, approached Adam at the next table to be petted.
Kimberly and Adam were married in 2019 in a ceremony on the top of Stratton Mountain in Vermont. They reside in Matawan, sharing their home with their 2-year-old son, Grant, and Lincoln.
The couple enjoys travel, hiking and listening to jazz. “Our long hikes have now become shorter, toddler-led hikes,” Herthel said. “But we really get the most enjoyment from exploring the world through the fresh eyes of a toddler.”
She added, “I knew I wanted to be a teacher since third grade but was unsure of the grade I wanted to teach. This is why I used my psychology degree in marketing instead of starting off my career in a school. Holmdel is the only school I have taught at, and I love how supportive the community is, including my colleagues, administration, staff and parents. Students take academics seriously but can still approach their teachers when they have difficulties, which allows me to grow as an educator. The opportunities to get involved in the community are ample; I co-advise the Student Council, and we coordinate school events like the Homecoming Court and field day for the high school, and I also co-advise the Key Club, where we help host charity events that focus on educating children around the world.”
Holmdel High School Principal Matthew Kukoda said, “I have observed Ms. Herthel’s classes on multiple occasions and each time was impressed with her professionalism and rapport with both her fellow educators and the students. Routines and procedures were clearly established, students of all ability levels were involved and engaged, skills were developed, and, most important, students and teachers were enjoying themselves. Her knowledge of content and the building blocks of skill development and acquisition were clear during the observation and during conversations reflecting on the lessons. Her ability to connect with students regardless of gender, ethnicity, ability and motivational level is unparalleled.”