Drawing inspiration from wonderful teachers she had as a child, Brenda Dale Perkins Butler had always known she wanted to emulate her educators and enlighten young minds. In 1971, she graduated from Texas State University with a Bachelor of Science in elementary education and would later conduct postgraduate coursework in economics and geography for teachers.
At the start of her career, Ms. Butler taught at Lone Star Elementary School, part of the New Braunfels Independent School District, from 1971 to 1974 and was a summer school reading teacher at the San Marcos Academy in the summer of 1974. That same year, she joined the San Marcos Consolidated Independent School District (CISD), where she would provide superior education as a gifted and talented teacher specialist for the remainder of her career. In this capacity, she provided her gifted and talented students with appropriate learning experiences designed to develop potential and lead to advanced academic achievement. With San Marcos CISD, Ms. Butler taught throughout the district, including at Bowie Elementary School, Travis Elementary School, the Lamar Personalized Learning Center, Hernandez Elementary School, Mendez Elementary School and Crockett Elementary School.
Finding vast success throughout the course of her career, Ms. Butler was the recipient of the National Citizenship Education Regional Teacher Post Recognition Award in 2018 and a seven-time winner of the Teacher of the Year Award from Crockett Elementary School. Additionally, the San Marcos CISD has awarded her the 2013 Distinguished Alumni Award, the 2009 Mendez Elementary Teacher of the Year Award and the 2003 Hernandez Elementary Teacher of the Year Award. Ms. Butler has also been recognized with a Citizen Education Award in 2004, Think Quest Junior Achievement in Education in 1999, Lions Club Teaching Excellence Award in 1996, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Excellence in Teaching Award in 1996 and Teacher of the Year Award from the Hays, Comal and Guadalupe District Conservation in 1981. She has also received an honorable mention from the National Economics Foundation and Texas Economics Council for Teaching from the State of Texas.
Reflecting on a fulfilling career, Ms. Butler attributes her success to her mother, who always told her that she could do anything she wanted to do in life. She also credits the superintendents and principals she has worked with that offered her the independence she needed to teach every student differently and successfully. Among many early educational influences, Ms. Butler recalls one of her teachers, Catherine Wiegand, was a particular inspiration, teaching her about Native American life.
Alongside her primary work, Ms. Butler is also an avid historian and has served as vice president of the local chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas. She has also volunteered with the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the Walk for Life Cancer Drive and for various school-related community activities, including Adopt-A-School, festivals and competitions and as a science fair coordinator with the Hernandez, Mendez and Crockett elementary schools. Actively involved in her local church, she has also taught Sunday school at the First Baptist Church of San Marcos.
Now retired from full-time teaching, Ms. Butler’s goal in the coming years is to volunteer in reading classes. She also aims to launch her own program where she can provide special experiences for the students where they are having fun while learning.