Once a Slicer, always a Slicer: Braden returning home


Ben Braden, former Slicer, is returning to the Maple City to take over as assistant principal at Handley Elementary School.

Braden’s roots lie deep in LaPorte, Indiana. As a child, he attended Crichfield Elementary School and Boston Middle School. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Ball State University and Master of Education in Educational Leadership from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.

While in college as business major, Braden decided to get into education after substitute teaching at the school his mother taught at. He then realized that business was not his passion but teaching was!

Before becoming an administrator, he taught for seven years in Savannah, Georgia, and Plano, Texas, teaching 4th grade, 3rd grade, Title 1 Math & Reading remediation, K-5 Gifted and Talented Teacher, 5th grade and team leader.   

Braden has served as an administrator at Barron Elementary and Shepard Elementary in Plano, Texas.

“I decided to become a principal because I have a passion for education. I love working with students, teachers, parents and community members to drive the mission and vision of a school forward. The fact that I get to go to work everyday and do what I love to do, is what gets me out of bed in the morning. I truly love this job.”  

Braden decided to return home to help the city’s youth in the same place where he grew up in and to be closer to family. Many of his former teachers are excited to have Braden return.  

“I remember him as a student and he was engaging, energetic, always on task, and just a good person. I have followed him throughout twitter here and there and I have seen that he is very excited about education, being a positive role model, and positive influence. I think we could all use a bit more of that,” Mrs. Cooper, LPHS English and former teacher of Braden, said.
Braden has a wife, Cathy, and a 5 year old daughter Avery who is a cancer survivor in remission for the past year and a half. Cathy runs the nonprofit called Owls for Avery to raise awareness and money for research on the cancer that their daughter beat. Information about the nonprofit can be found at http://owlsforavery.org/.  

Returning back to his hometown, Braden and his family are sure to make an impact on Handley and all of LaPorte and his passion and purpose will surely make this possible.

“I believe wholeheartedly in our mission as educators.  I believe all kids can succeed, and a caring relationship with an adult may be what a young child needs to be successful in life.  I know communities can grow, states can thrive, countries can excel and the world can become a kinder place through the education of the youth.  No excuses.” Braden said.


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