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Hank Nguyen

Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD) Electronics Technician Hung “Hank” Nguyen was recognized by the Orange County Department of Education (OCDE) as one of nine 2024 Orange County Classified School Employees of the Year. 

“Hank’s recognition by the Orange County Department of Education is well-deserved. He is an outstanding member of the Newport-Mesa team. Hank’s dedication, expertise, and unwavering commitment to ensuring our technological infrastructure runs smoothly have been invaluable to our schools,” said Superintendent Dr. Wesley Smith.

Nguyen is regularly relied upon for his problem-solving abilities. His prior employment in the private sector provided a strong background in servicing fire alarms, and he has extensive experience with low-voltage systems. As the district modernizes its systems, Nguyen has been an incredible resource for the design team thanks to his expertise. He researched devices and options for reconfiguring systems across the district with a keen eye on building codes to maintain safety districtwide. 

“Hank is so devoted to the district and is always ready and eager to help wherever help is needed. He is reliable, dependable, and thorough in ensuring students can continue their education in a safe and secure environment,” said Lance Bidnick, Administrative Director II of Maintenance and Operations. What sets Hank apart is that he is selfless and makes sure to point out the good work of his coworkers even when he deserves the credit.

Among his many notable contributions, Nguyen coordinated the installation of surveillance cameras at multiple school campuses. He worked with site administrators to determine the best locations for the cameras, then assembled and coordinated a crew of maintenance personnel to complete the task. He also ensured principals had the tools they would need to feel comfortable using the new surveillance system. 

Hank provides comprehensive training to school staff on the use of equipment to avoid accidentally tripping an alarm during a fire drill. Fire departments in Costa Mesa and Newport Beach will ask for Nguyen when this occurs because they know he can be trusted to correctly reset alarms and improve protocols. 

Nguyen — who attended Paularino Elementary, Davis Middle (now Magnet School), and Costa Mesa High School — was selected from among 82 nominees countywide. He will be formally recognized by the NMUSD Board of Education at its May 14 meeting and celebrated by OCDE during Classified School Employee Week, which starts May 20.