Front row, left to right, Gov. and Mrs. Steve, Beshear; Heidi Givens, 2013 Elementary School Teacher of the Year; Kristal Doolin, 2013 Kentucky Teacher of the Year; Allison Hunt, 2013 High School Teacher of the Year; Jim O'Brien, Ashland Chairman and CEO; Terry Holliday, Commissioner of Education, and David Karem, Kentucky School Board Chairman.
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Each year, we join the Kentucky Department of Education in naming the Kentucky Teacher of the Year. The 2013 honoree is Kristal Doolin, a language arts teacher at Corbin Middle School.
Heidi Givens, a teacher of deaf and hard-of-hearing students at Tamarack Elementary in Daviess County, was named 2013 Elementary School Teacher of the Year. Allison Hunt, social studies teacher at duPont Manual High School in Jefferson County, was named 2013 High School Teacher of the Year.
The three joined 21 other teachers from across the state honored with 2013 Ashland Inc. Teacher Achievement Awards. Givens and Hunt received $3,000 each and a customized, art-glass vase from Ashland Inc., while Doolin received $10,000 and a commemorative crystal-glass bowl. In addition, the Department of Education will provide a sabbatical or suitable alternative for Doolin, who also will represent the state in the 2013 National Teacher of the Year competition. The remaining 21 winners each received $500 cash awards.
Click here to read a news release.
Ashland has recognized outstanding Kentucky teachers with its Teacher Achievement Awards since 1988. Approximately $658,000 has been awarded to nearly 450 teachers of grades K to 12.
Corbin Middle School
With 15 years’ teaching experience, Kristal Doolin has taught language arts at Corbin Middle School for seven years. Doolin earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Union College and has achieved national board certification. She chairs her school’s Writing Program Review Committee and participates in the Kentucky Leadership Network for Language Arts. Doolin has served as a professional-development facilitator and as a presenter at the Measures of Academic Program (MAP) Summer Institute, district professional development and New Standard Back to Writing Portfolio Training initiatives.
Doolin has served as a Kentucky Writing master trainer and is an inductee of Delta Kappa Gamma Society International for Key Women Educators. She is a Kentucky Education Association grant recipient, and her professional affiliations include the Kentucky Council of Teachers of English/Language Arts, the Corbin, Kentucky and National Education associations and National Council of Teachers of English.
Country Heights Elementary School, Owensboro
Seventeen-year educator Heidi Givens has taught deaf and hard-of-hearing (DHH) students at Country Heights Elementary for eight years. She currently teaches DHH students as an itinerant teacher for Daviess County and Owensboro Independent Schools. Givens earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Boston University and has achieved national board certification. She is founder and Conference Committee chair of the Kentucky Educators for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing and founder/president/treasurer of the Owensboro Resource Center for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing.
Givens is a Kentucky Teacher Internship Program resource for two DHH teachers and has presented many DHH-related presentations over the past decade. She served on a Standard Setting Study panel for the DHH praxis exam and participated in a group that developed materials for teaching American Sign Language to DHH students. Givens is a member of the Kentucky Educators for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing and Registry Interpreters of the Deaf.
duPont Manual High School, Louisville
Allison Hunt has taught social studies at duPont Manual High School for five years of her 10-year teaching career. Hunt earned a bachelor’s degree at Georgetown College and a master’s degree at the University of Louisville. She mentors student teachers, implemented an AP Human Geography course, sponsors the school’s History Club and is a member of the Site-Based Decision Making Council. Hunt has received WHAS-TV Excellence in Classroom and Educational Leadership, National Society of High School Scholars, Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction and Kentucky Outstanding Civic Education Leadership awards.
Her professional affiliations include the Foundation for Teaching Economics Professional Teaching Association, Global Association of Teachers of Economics, Kentucky Geography Alliance, National Council for Geographic Education, CollegeBoard, AP Human Geography, Kentucky Association for Teachers of History and the World Affairs Council of Kentucky and Southern Indiana.
Simpsonville Elementary School
With three years of teaching experience, Sloane Barnett has taught fifth-grade students at Simpsonville Elementary for the past two years. Barnett earned a bachelor’s degree at Western Kentucky University and a master’s degree at the University of Louisville. She has led professional-development programs on Common Core Math Standards and Introducing Thinking and Complexity activities aligned to those standards.
Barnett serves as lead for her school’s Math Network Teacher Pool. She is the 2012 Shelby County Public Schools WHAS Excel Teacher of the Year and Simpsonville Elementary School Teacher of the Year. Barnett serves as teacher/coach of the Simpsonville Elementary Cross-Country Club and as a teacher for the Bobcat Learning Lab. She also provides after-school tutoring.
Menifee County High School
Fifteen-year veteran educator Randy Barrette has taught Spanish/world cultures at Menifee County High School for nine years. Barrette earned a bachelor’s degree from James Madison College at Michigan State University and a master’s degree at Ohio University. He also completed a Teacher Education Program and is enrolled in an Instructional Design and Technology Integration Program at Morehead State University. Barrette co-authored a winning proposal for an Enhancing Education Through Technology grant.
As an officer of the Kentucky World Language Association, he has helped provide professional learning opportunities for educators across the commonwealth. Barrette’s professional affiliations include the International Society for Technology in Education, the Kentucky World Language Association and the American Council of Teachers of Foreign Languages.
Manchester Elementary School
Ten-year educator Joyce Bowling has taught first-grade at Manchester Elementary for nine years. Bowling earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Union College and is working on a doctorate at the University of the Cumberlands. She serves on a district team aimed at launching/piloting virtual classrooms on Blackboard and is the district Elementary English Language Arts leader. Bowling presented at a National Council of Social Studies Geography Conference.
She mentors student/new teachers, educates colleagues on I-Mac computers and works with Future Educators of Kentucky students. Her class was featured on WTVQ’s “What’s Cool in Your School.” She was a Kentucky Teacher of the Year nominee and Teacher Achievement Award recipient. Bowling is a member of the Kentucky Teacher, Kentucky Storytellers and SESC English Language Arts associations and Kentucky Authors for Educators.
Joyce Ellen Bowling
Shelby County East Middle School
With 11 years of teaching experience, Jennifer Cox has taught language arts at Shelby County East Middle School for three years. Cox earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Kentucky, a master’s degree at Bellarmine University, and she is pursuing an Ed.S in school administration. Cox serves as a Thinking Strategies Cohort Teacher for the District Instruction Team, and her classroom is a district model for the Thinking Strategies and Reading/Writing workshop.
She chaired her school’s Writing Program Review project and served as a District Writing Cluster Leader. Cox is the 2012 Shelby County Middle School Teacher of the Year and the East Middle School Teacher of the Year. Her professional affiliations include the Shelby County, Kentucky and National Education associations and the Shelby County District Instructional Leadership Team.
Jennifer H. Cox
Henry Clay High School, Lexington
Linda Dewees has 15 years’ teaching experience, all spent at Henry Clay High School, where she teaches math. Dewees earned a bachelor’s degree and Rank II certification at the University of Kentucky. She has served as lead for her school’s Algebra I Professional Learning Community and as a calendar math trainer. Dewees is currently training a new AP Statistics teacher for her school, and she has trained new AP Statistics teachers countywide during a two-day workshop.
She also served as instructional chair of her school’s Math Department. Dewees is a recipient of University of Kentucky Teacher Who Made a Difference, Fayette County District FAME and Teacher Spotlights in Fayette County awards. Her professional affiliations include the Fayette County Math Instructional Learning Community and National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
Lexington Traditional Magnet School
A 14-year veteran educator, Christi Elkins-Gabbard has taught language arts at Lexington Traditional Magnet School for the past four years. Elkins-Gabbard earned a bachelor’s degree at Georgetown College and a master’s degree at the University of Kentucky. She chairs her school’s Language Arts Department and has served on the English Language Arts/Curriculum Assessment Team. Elkins-Gabbard also has served as a team leader in various subject areas and as a mentor through the Kentucky Teacher Internship Program.
She received a 2012 scholarship to attend the Belfer Conference at the U.S. Holocaust Museum and was named 2012 Lexington Traditional Magnet School Teacher of the Year. Elkins-Gabbard also has received her school’s Perfect Attendance Award. Her professional affiliations include the Kentucky and National Education associations.
Dixie Heights High School, Fort Mitchell
Nine-year teaching veteran Kristopher Bryant Gillis has taught English/language arts at Dixie Heights High School for four years. Gillis earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Kentucky. He supervises a student teacher from Morehead State University and has presented at Prichard Committee Showcase and Northern Kentucky Teacher Network meetings and at an Unleashing Group Genius conference in New Orleans.
Gillis took part in the inaugural Literacy by Design Collaborative meeting in Baltimore. He is a Golden Apple Award nominee and recipient of a Teacher Recognition Award from the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers. Gillis was honored three consecutive years by the Kenton County Champions of Learning. He served as a Regional Scholastics Writing judge and recently returned from an EF educational tour encompassing London, Paris, Florence and Rome.
Kristopher Bryant Gillis
Daviess County High School
Angela Gunter has taught English at Daviess County High School all nine years of her teaching career. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English with a Secondary Education and Middle School Endorsement from the University of Southern Indiana; her master’s and doctorate degrees and Instructional Computer Technology Endorsement from Western Kentucky University, and has achieved national board certification.
Gunter has served as a College Board AP English Language and Composition essay reader and as a presenter/workshop leader for the Owensboro Public Schools Summer Learning Academy, an Advance Kentucky English workshop and a Navigating the Doctoral Journey session. Gunter chaired the 76th Annual Conference of the Kentucky Council of Teachers of English and is a recipient of the University of Kentucky Teacher Who Make a Difference Award. Her professional affiliations also include the Kentucky Bluegrass Award Reader Committee, Collaborative Center for Literacy Development and Kentucky Writing Project.
Madison Central High School, Richmond
A 22-year veteran educator, Lisa Jury has taught music at Madison Central High School for the past eight years. Jury earned a bachelor’s degree at Illinois State University and a master’s degree at Eastern Kentucky University. She serves as a resource for student teachers through the Kentucky Teacher Internship Program. Jury also mentors new teachers at her school.
She is a recipient of the Kentucky Colonel Award and has been selected to direct the Eastern Kentucky University Foster Music Camp High School Chorus, the Madison Central High School Choir at a Kentucky Music Educators Association Music Convention and the opening ceremony choir for a Boy’s State final championship game. Jury’s professional affiliations include the American Choral Directors and Kentucky Music Educators associations, National Association of Music Educators and the Cecilian Club.
Lisa L. Jury
Rowan County Middle School
Twenty-seven year teaching veteran Michael Kash has taught alternative education courses to seventh- and eighth-grade students at Rowan County Middle School for the past two years. Kash earned associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Morehead State University. He serves as head teacher for the Bluegrass Discovery Academy and has presented at Kentucky and National Drop-Out conferences.
Kash also has served as a Kentucky Department of Education drop-out consultant and as a safe-school consultant. He has further served his community throughout the years as a domestic violence consultant and through support of Morehead Parks and Recreation initiatives. Kash also has been a coach/organizer of youth football, basketball and baseball teams.
Michael W. Kash
May Valley Elementary School, Martin
Amanda Lee has spent the last two years of her five-year career teaching first-grade students at May Valley Elementary School. Lee earned an associate degree at Big Sandy Community and Technical College, a bachelor’s degree at Morehead State University and a master’s degree at Union College. Attendance at a 2012 Get Motivated Lexington seminar gave Lee an opportunity to hear Steve Forbes, Laura Bush, Colin Powell, Rudy Giuliani, Lou Holtz and John Calipari speak on various aspects of leadership.
She is a member of her school’s Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Team and serves as lead in development of the annual Comprehensive School Improvement Plan. Lee further serves her community through betterment initiatives that include Earth Day, Relay for Life and Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation activities. She also organized a toy drive for children impacted by a tornado that hit Salyersville last year.
Hendron/Lone Oak Elementary
Cathy McAlister has taught gifted/talented courses at Hendron/Lone Oak Elementary throughout her 17-year teaching career. McAlister earned an associate degree at Paducah Community College and bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Murray State University. She also has achieved national board certification.
McAlister hosts students for classroom observation from Western Kentucky Vocational and Technical College. She has co-presented staff-development activities on the M.A.P.S. testing system and at the McCracken County Teaching and Learning Institute on teaching successfully using small-group instruction. McAlister is a member of the McCracken County, Kentucky and National Education Associations.
Betsy Layne Elementary
With 17 years in the education field, Tammy Meade has taught science at Betsy Layne Elementary for 10 years. Meade earned a bachelor’s degree at Pikeville College and two master’s degrees at Morehead State University. She also holds Fifth Grade to Eighth Grade Science Endorsement. Meade chairs her school’s Science Department and is a member of the Site Based Decision Making Council. She also serves as a Kentucky Teacher Internship Program resource teacher and a Professional Learning Community facilitator/team leader.
Meade has been included in Who’s Who Among America’s Middle School Teachers and is a recipient of the CEDAR Coal Fair Unit Teacher of the Year Award. She also has been nominated for the Disney Teacher of the Year Award, and her professional affiliations include the Kentucky Science Teachers, Floyd County Education and Kentucky Education associations.
Tamatha (Tammy) Meade
Collins Lane Elementary, Frankfort
Cheryl Cox Nance has taught kindergarten students at Collins Lane Elementary for 16 of her 17-year teaching career. Nance earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Georgetown College. She has achieved national board certification and mentors others in the process. Nance is part of the Franklin County Teacher Leaders Network and a Collins Lane team leader. She has served on the Franklin County Instructional Rounds and Common Core Standards teams.
Nance is a recipient of the Dr. Joseph Liebman Memorial Award for Outstanding Elementary Teacher. As a member of the Cinderella’s Closet Executive Council, she helps ensure area girls have prom dresses. The organization also supported efforts to enable West Liberty students to have a prom after a tornado hit the community last year. Nance’s professional affiliations include Alpha Delta Kappa, the International Reading and Franklin County Education associations.
Cheryl Cox Nance
South Oldham High School
A 24-year veteran educator, Christine Price has taught English courses at South Oldham High School for the past four years. Price earned a bachelor’s degree at Berry College, Mt. Berry, Ga., as well as master’s and doctorate degrees at the University of Louisville. She serves as a resource teacher through the Kentucky Teacher Internship Program and is a member of the Oldham County District Leadership Team and the Oldham County Reading Task Force Assessment Committee.
Price also serves as lead teacher for Curriculum and Assessment of English PLC at her school. She is a recipient of South Oldham High School Teacher of the Year and GE Star Teaching awards. Price has been nominated twice for the Bellarmine University Outstanding Faculty Member Award. She is a member of the Kentucky Education Association.
Christine G. Price
Muhlenberg County High School
A 21-year teaching veteran, Carolyn Faye Shelton has taught humanities at Muhlenberg County High School for 16 years. Shelton earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees and Rank I certification at Western Kentucky University. She serves as lead teacher for her department and as a resource for first-year teachers. Shelton also serves on and chairs various school committees on an ongoing basis.
She has been a Writing Project representative and taught classroom writing for professional-development initiatives across the western part of the state. Shelton is a 2012 Kentucky Teacher of the Year. She also has received a Walt Disney Teacher of the Year Award and has been included in Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers multiple times. Her professional affiliations include the Kentucky Education and Kentucky Arts associations.
Carolyn Faye Shelton
Westport Middle School, Louisville
Karen Stark has taught students with moderate and severe disabilities at Westport Middle School throughout her 12-year teaching career. Stark earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Louisville and achieved an additional 443 hours of professional-development credit. Her classroom was selected as a model for an Autism Research Study by the National Professional Development Center at the University of North Carolina. Stark chairs her school’s Exceptional Children Education Department and is a cooperating teacher for student teachers from the University of Louisville.
Stark also serves as a Diverse Learner Institute facilitator. She is a recipient of Metro Disability Coalition Breaking Barriers Spotlight, Westport Middle School Leadership and Westport Middle School Caring awards. Her professional affiliations include the Westport Middle School Site Based Decision Making Council and Jefferson County Teacher Association./p>
Karen P. Stark
Paducah Middle School
Megan Storey has been teaching for six years, and for the last year she has taught reading at Paducah Middle School. Storey earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Murray State University. She is a member of the Kentucky English Language Arts Leadership Network and the Comprehensive School Improvement Committee.
In 2012, Storey received Lexile Framework training, enabling her to guide the ELA Department in its transition to the Lexile Framework. Storey also attended a series of seminars addressing best practices in reading instruction conducted by the Kentucky Reading Project. Storey’s professional affiliations include the Kentucky Education and Kentucky Librarian associations.
Deming School, Mount Olivet
Nine-year teaching veteran Amanda Underwood has taught science at the Deming School for seven years. Underwood earned a bachelor’s degree at Morehead State University and a master’s degree at Walden University. She also has achieved national board certification. Underwood serves as a facilitator for the Kentucky Education Association’s Jumpstart Team, helping others involved in the national board certification process.
As a member of a science standards group, she keeps up with current teaching strategies and standards and shares that information with co-workers and her school’s administration. Underwood was a 2011 finalist for Kentucky’s Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science, and she has been a Robertson County Teacher of the Year. She serves on the board of the Kentucky Science Teachers Association and also is a member of the National Science Teachers Association.
Amanda R. Underwood
Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School, Louisville
With 30 years’ teaching experience, Anita Winstead has served as a gifted resource teacher at Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary for three years. Winstead earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Louisville. She has completed 15 additional semester hours as well as numerous other professional-development initiatives. Winstead coordinates a Fund for the Arts grant and Gifted Education Nights and serves as lead for a Build the Dream Stage Project.
She is a resource teacher for the Kentucky Teacher Internship Program and an academic team coach/coordinator. Winstead is a recipient of Ashland Teacher Achievement, Aegon Teacher and Walmart Teacher of the Year awards. Her professional affiliations include the Kentucky Education, National Science Teachers and Jefferson County Teachers associations and the Kentucky Association for Gifted Children.
James T. Alton Middle School, Vine Grove
A 17-year veteran educator, Byron Witham has taught instrumental music/band classes at James T. Alton Middle School for eight years. Witham earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Eastern Kentucky University and Rank I certification at the University of South Carolina. He serves as his school’s Related Arts Team leader and as a cooperating teacher for North Hardin High School Cadet Teachers. Witham also has mentored college students interested in pursuing music-education careers.
He has received recognition from the Order of the Kentucky Colonels and been nominated for Fourth District Middle School Music Teacher of the Year and Excel awards. As part of the Heartland Winds Community Band, he provides free community concerts. His professional affiliations include the Fourth District Band Directors, Kentucky Music Educators and Kentucky Education associations and National Association of Music Education.
Byron L. Witham