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Meet Stephanie

Growing up along the scenic Husky Highway, Stephanie has deep roots as a lifelong resident of Marion County. Fondly reminiscing about her childhood, she cherishes memories of riding her bicycle to the Mannington pool, casting lines at Rachel Dam, enjoying sled-riding parties at the Nick Saban Football Field in IdaMay, and proudly marching under the Friday-Night lights of Woodcutter Stadium.

During her high school years at North Marion, Stephanie's passion for community involvement shone through as she actively participated in athletics, the Marching Band, and FFA. Simultaneously, she dedicated herself to part-time work at Red Dot Pharmacy, gaining valuable experience.

Following high school, Stephanie's commitment to personal and academic growth remained unwavering. She embarked on a journey to higher education, balancing work and studies. Her perseverance led her to earn degrees and certifications in Biology and Secondary Science Education from West Virginia University and Fairmont State College, showcasing her dedication to learning and community development.

Tomana is a well-respected teacher, coach, mentor, and community volunteer. 

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In The Classroom

For nearly two decades, Stephanie has been a dedicated science teacher, making a profound impact on the education landscape in both parochial and public schools throughout Marion County. Her commitment to fostering a love for science among her students is evident in the immersive hands-on activities she has introduced.

Stephanie's classrooms have been hubs of experiential learning, featuring engaging field trips to the Challenger Learning Center, participation in Science Fair competitions, exploration of the Star Lab, and the unique experience of maintaining a vibrant classroom greenhouse.

Recognizing her outstanding contributions, Stephanie earned nominations for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching in 2021 and 2023. Moreover, she was honored with the prestigious 2022 J. Kevin Scanlon Award, a testament to her tireless efforts in promoting and enhancing science education. Stephanie's accolades underscore her dedication to shaping the next generation of scientifically literate and curious minds.

 

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In The Community

Embodying the family mantra of 'see a need, fill a need,' Stephanie has consistently dedicated her time to various essential roles within our community. A fervent youth sports enthusiast, she has been affectionately known as "Coach Tomana," contributing numerous years to coaching Track & Field, Cross Country, and Recreational Soccer.

In addition to her involvement in sports, Stephanie has played vital roles in the community's spiritual and social fabric. As a devoted Catechist at St. Patrick's Parish, she has shared her faith and wisdom with many. Her commitment extends to volunteering with the IdaMay Improvement Association, where she actively contributes to community initiatives.

Among her most cherished roles, Stephanie takes great pride in having served as a foster mother, demonstrating her profound commitment to the well-being of children. Furthermore, she has taken on the responsibility of Co-Chair for the Vicariate Pastoral Council, showcasing her leadership and dedication to the broader community's spiritual development and well-being.

 

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The Tomana's

When recounting their love story, Chris, Stephanie's husband, fondly reflects, "We've known each other for most of our lives. My parents and her stepfather, both IdaMay natives, played in bands together over the years; music has always been a significant part of our lives. Whether at neighborhood picnics or softball tournaments, my earliest memory of Steph is watching this 'curly black-haired little girl' running through the yard, laughing while her mother chased after her."

While Stephanie pursued her education at the University, Chris embarked on his career in industrial construction. His work often required him to travel across the country or to Europe for projects in oil refineries, power plants, or textile mills. On a visit home, the couple reconnected and married a few years later.  

                                                                                         Having strong family ties to the community, it was only natural for Chris and Stephanie to choose
                                                                                          the once bustling model coal town of IdaMay as their home. The central location allowed
                                                                                           them to build strong community ties throughout the county while raising their two daughters.

 

                                                                                              Sophia, the Tomana's oldest daughter, is currently pursuing degrees in Exercise Science and
                                                                                              Physical Therapy. Their youngest daughter, Lillian, is still at home, and the family enjoys the
                                                                                               company of their two dogs, Gus and Lady Mae. The Tomana family's journey reflects a
                                                                                               beautiful blend of shared history, love, and a commitment to community life in picturesque
                                                                                                small town of West Virginia.

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