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Heather Lighston is an 8th grade Language Arts and Visual/Performing Arts teacher at Palmdale Learning Plaza in California. In addition to teaching, she also coaches cheerleading, and is a member of the African-American Parental Advisory Committee, an administrative intern, a community service project mentor, and the coordinator for the school's Girls Build LA team. In that capacity, Ms. Lighston works with 6th through 8th grade girls to spread the love of STEM and is involved with outreach in the local community of Palmdale. She and her team network with local female aerospace engineers from Lockheed Martin and Boeing, and collaborate with organizations such as the Girl Scouts of America, the Society of Women Engineers, Edwards Air Force Base, and NASA Armstrong. Heather was also recently recognized as the Palmdale School District Teacher of the Year, as well as one of the top sixteen Los Angeles County Teachers of the Year for the 2018-2019 school year.