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State finalists named for math, science teaching excellence awards

Posted: Jun 21, 2016
Categories: KSDE
Author: Ann Bush

Ann Marie Bush, Communications Specialist     (785) 296-7921

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 21, 2016

TOPEKA — The 2016 state finalists for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching were named during a special ceremony Monday, June 20, at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center in Hutchinson.

The 2016 state finalists for mathematics include Brandy Gnad, Abe Hubert Elementary School, Garden City Unified School District 457; Heidi Harris, Union Valley Elementary School, Buhler USD 313; and Kandy Williams, West Elementary School, Wamego USD 320.

The 2016 state finalists for science include Heather Hundley, Colorado Elementary School, Holton USD 336; Charlotte Neugebauer, Gammon Elementary School, Wichita USD 259; and Nancy Smith, Bentwood Elementary School, Olathe USD 233.

The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching are the nation's highest honor for mathematics and science teaching. They are presented to educators who show a high degree of knowledge, innovation, skill and leadership.

Elementary and secondary educators are recognized in alternating years. This year, elementary educators are being recognized. Kansas had 12 mathematics nominees and 12 science nominees (a list of all nominees is attached). Each of the state finalists received a $500 cash award and will go on to compete for a national finalist title. Two educators from each state, one in the area of mathematics and one in science, may be named national finalists. Each of the national finalists will receive a $10,000 award.

The awards ceremony took place in conjunction with the 2016 Kansas Excellence in Math and Science Teaching Conference, a three-day event at Hutchinson Community College that is hosted by the Kansas State Department of Education. The conference is from June 20 through Wednesday, June 22. More than100 science and math educators from across Kansas are attending the event, which features math and science presentations and workshops delivered by leading Kansas educators.

The conference is sponsored by Westar Energy, Wolf Creek Nuclear Operating Corp. and the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center.

2016 Kansas Nominees for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching

MATHEMATICS

Jill Bergee
Nike Elementary School
Lisa Thompson, principal
Pam Stranathan, superintendent
Gardner Edgerton USD 231

Amanda Buethe
Ness City Elementary School
Derek Reinhardt, principal
Derek Reinhardt, superintendent
Ness City USD 303

Desiree Delehant
Charles Stone Intermediate Center
Janet Smith, principal
Dr. Steve Karlin, superintendent
Garden City USD 457

Brandy Gnad
Abe Hubert Elementary School
Martha Darter, principal
Dr. Steve Karlin, superintendent
Garden City USD 457

Heidi Harris
Union Valley Elementary School
Paul Erickson, principal
Mike Berblinger, superintendent
Buhler USD 313

Laura Hurla
Berryton Elementary School
Stacey Giebler, principal
Dr. Martin Stessman, superintendent
Shawnee Heights USD 450

Amanda Neff
Emporia Middle School
Wendy Baumgardner, principal
Theresa Davidson, superintendent
Emporia USD 253

Tennille Nelson
Whittier Elementary School
Geri Cunningham, principal
Dr. Cynthia Lane, superintendent
Kansas City USD 500

Kellie Obermueller
Lincoln Elementary School
Stephen Koch, principal
Kathy Robertson, superintendent
Lincoln USD 298

Sherry Owen
Lincoln Memorial Elementary School
Kenneth Eckelberry, principal
Blake Vargas, superintendent
Caney Valley USD 436

Kandy Williams
West Elementary School
Amy Flinn, principal
Denise O’Dea, superintendent
Wamego USD 320

Catherine Woodyard
West Elementary School
Amy Flinn, principal
Denise O’Dea, superintendent
Wamego USD 320

SCIENCE

Pamela Cole
Amelia Earhart Elementary School
Natalie Rust, principal
Dr. Justin Henry, superintendent
Goddard USD 265

Heather Hundley
Colorado Elementary School
Dr. Joseph Kelly, principal
Dennis Stones, superintendent
Holton USD 336

Melodee Knopp
Robert V. Haderlein Elementary School
Mark LaTurner, principal
Blaise Bauer, superintendent
Girard USD 248

Doug Mann
Challenger Intermediate
Jess Herbig, principal
Dr. Justin Henry, superintendent
Goddard USD 265

Sarah Medlam
Dean Ray Stucky Middle School
Jennifer Sinclair, principal
John Allison, superintendent
Wichita USD 259

Laura Moore
Prairie Elementary School
Scott Merfen, principal
Dr. Jim Hinson, superintendent
Shawnee Mission USD 512

Bobbie Jo Moran
Horace Mann Dual Language Magnet
Vanessa Martinez, principal
John Allison, superintendent
Wichita USD 259

Charlotte Neugebauer
Gammon Elementary School
Mendie Vicin, principal
John Allison, superintendent
Wichita USD 259

Hilary Rieck
Highland Elementary School
Amber Wheeler, principal
David Carriger, superintendent
Columbus USD 493

Lorie Schaller
West Elementary School
Peter Bastian, principal
Cory Gibson, superintendent
USD 262 Valley Center

Nancy Smith
Bentwood Elementary School
Dr. Cathy McDonald, principal
Dr. Marlin Berry, superintendent
Olathe USD 233

Carmen Zeisler
Roosevelt Elementary School
Todd Beam, principal
Mark Crawford, superintendent
McPherson USD 418

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