Larry Baran

Overland Park, KS | Years Taught: 1970 – Present

Larry has been a classroom teacher for a quarter of a century. His goal is to make his students life-long learners by teaching survival academics during the teachable moments of job skills training. Baran has produced champions among his disabled students by getting those special education students involved in production of materials for many national events including presidential inaugurations, remembrances of Pearl Harbor and Desert Storm. Larry Baran is nicknamed Captain Rainbow because he has been able to achieve the impossible for himself and his students. He exemplifies his simple philosophy that “The Impossible Dream Isn’t” to all those people whose lives he’s touched through his many years of teaching and involvement with the community.

Additional Recognition

  • 2008 • The Diamond Award – Secretary of Veterans Affairs
  • 2008 • The Department of the Army Commanders Award for Public Service – Arlington National Cemetery
  • 1997 • The George Washington Honor Medal – Freedoms Foundation of Valley Forge
  • 1996 • The Readers Digest American Heroes in Education
  • 1996 • The Golden Apple Teacher Award – Golden Apple Foundation of Chicago
  • 1996 • Dr. Dresser Cancer Award
  • 1996 • Clinton Presidential Visit
  • 1995 • Pentagon recognition WWII Anniversary
  • 1995 • Marine Corp Recognition Iowa Jima 50th Anniversary
  • 1994-1995 • Subject of Pentagon Documentary film
  • 1995 • American Heroes in Education by Readers Digest
  • 1995 • Chicagoland Metropolitan Area Golden Apple Teacher of the Year Award
  • 1994 • American Horticultural Society Award
  • 1993 • Valley Forge Freedoms Foundation
  • 1991 • President Bush Points of Light
  • 1989 • VP Quayle Visit