To the Editor:

For almost 40 years at Western Connecticut State University, I helped prospective educators achieve their goals.

Now, throughout the state, the country and the world, talented alumni enrich the students they serve.

Steve Flanagan, whom I have known for more than 30 years, stands out as one of the most dedicated instructors I have known.

Many of Steve's pupils came to Western. As the chairman of the history department, I noted he continued to help these students as they transitioned into the university.

I learned about Steve's concern about good teaching,a professional who New Milford High School chose to present new themes in teacher training sessions, whether it was in advanced placement courses, the history of film or basic introductory classes.

Students knew they could rely on him to write personalized letters of recommendation to colleges, to help with their problems in learning, to listen to their problems at home and in school, and to support their extracurricular activities.

Anyone who walks through NMHS will stop to enjoy the giant collages of students at work and at play. Steve suggested these displays; he took some of the pictures and helped design the layout.

Students who love to see their pictures know Mr. Flanagan cherishes young people. These pictures and the testimonies of hundreds of NMHS alumni confirm the dedication of a great teacher.

Like them, I am honored to know him.

Dr. John Leopold