Betty Jo Azpell

Betty Jo Zintek Azpell, HA ’58

In 1977, Betty Jo began her distinguished 38 year tenure at DSHA, serving 30 of those years as science chairperson. Early in her career, she started the anatomy & physiology course, where she introduced cat dissection as part of the curriculum. While chairperson, Honors Biology, AP Biology, AP Chemistry, Honors Physics, and Engineering were added to science class offerings. Betty Jo began an environmental program in which students tested the quality and health of the Milwaukee River. She also led international science trips to destinations including Siberia, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Hawaii. She started the school science fair, and her experience with hands-on science projects inspired her to create ISRP – an Independent Science Research Project course, in which students learn how to do real, relevant science. Over 175 students took this course led by Betty Jo until her retirement in 2015.
Betty Jo has received numerous honors and awards for her outstanding work in science education, including the Kohl Fellowship Teaching Award in 1997. She is involved professionally in a number of science teacher associations, organizations and boards.
Betty Jo has been an active community volunteer with the National Ski Patrol Association, Elm Grove Fire Department, and St. Mary’s Elm Grove Parish.
Betty Jo graduated from Holy Angels Academy in 1958. She earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from Mount Mary College and her master’s in education from Silver Lake College. 
Betty Jo and her husband have three sons, one daughter, and 11 grandchildren.  

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