North Carolina Teacher of the Year Program

  • For more than 50 years our nation has honored teachers with the National Teacher of the Year Program . The National Teacher of the Year Program, sponsored by the Voya Financial, Inc., is a project of the Council of Chief State School Officers. Since 1970, North Carolina has participated in this program recognizing outstanding teachers.

    In 2013, the NC Department of Public Instruction announced their partnership with Burroughs Wellcome Fund as the new major sponsor of the North Carolina Teacher of the Year Program. The Burroughs Wellcome Fund (BWF) is an independent private foundation dedicated to advancing the biomedical sciences by supporting research and other scientific and educational activities. Within this broad mission, BWF seeks to help scientists early in their careers develop as independent investigators and to advance fields in the biomedical sciences that are undervalued or in need of particular encouragement. BWF was founded in 1955 as the corporate foundation of Burroughs Wellcome Co., the U.S. branch of the Wellcome pharmaceutical enterprise, based in the United Kingdom. In 1993, BWF received a $400 million gift from the Wellcome Trust to become a fully independent foundation.


    About the Program

    In accordance with national guidelines, North Carolina chooses a candidate who is "dedicated and highly skilled, a candidate proven capable of inspiring students of all backgrounds and abilities to learn." Because the State Teacher of the Year will be asked to travel, speak on behalf of education and demonstrate master teaching skills, the candidate must be poised, articulate, and energetic in order to meet the demanding responsibilities.

    The NC Teacher of the Year is recognized at the school, regional, and statewide levels. First, the teacher is chosen to represent their respective school as Teacher of the Year. Similarly, individual public charter schools nominate a Teacher of the Year who participates in a selection process facilitated by the Office of Charter Schools at the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. Next, once each school district and the charter school nomination processes are completed, the teacher finalists vie as one of the state’s nine Regional Teachers of the Year. [The state is divided into eight geographical regions and NC Charter Schools are clustered together to form the ninth region of the state. The Charter School Teacher of the Year joins the Regional Teachers of the Year team as a finalist for the state Teacher of the Year]. This selection process is facilitated in each region by Regional Education Facilitators.

    After a series of relevant screening activities, the State Teacher of the Year is chosen by a committee consisting of professional educators as well as business and community leaders. The state selection committee members are chosen based on their dynamic public record in support of education. The State Teacher of the Year and the other Regional Finalists form a collaborative network to provide services and support throughout the state on critical issues facing public education. The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education take pride in celebrating the most innovative and effective public school educators in our state.


    CHCCS Teacher of the Year Program

    The CHCCS Teacher of the Year Award was initiated in 1979.  The Teacher of the Year program recognizes excellence in teaching in the CHCCS. 

    A Teacher of the Year represents exemplary performance as a member of the teaching staff for CHCCS.  Such performance can be characterized by excellence in the classroom, civic involvement, contributions to the profession of teaching, the possession of positive interpersonal skills and the demonstration of keen interest in the lives of children and youth.

    The district’s Teacher of the Year receives a $1,000 cash prize and a plaque.  The two honor teachers receive $500, and the remaining teachers receive $100 each.  A committee of past recipients, peers, principals and administrators selects the District Teacher of the Year, and the CHCCS Teacher of the Year is announced at the annual Recognition Reception. 

    2000    Jami Burns

    2001    Julia Dermody

    2002    Patti Donnelly

    2003    Gwendolyn Belcher

    2004    Carla Gilchrist

    2005    Robin McMahon

    2006    Dorothy Works

    2007    Jay Wilson III

    2008    Shirley Pyon

    2009    Briana Corke

    2010    Kathryn Baird Eriksen

    2011    Takiyah Baptist

    2012    Patricia Berge

    2013    Kim Mellor

    2014    Mike Harris

    2015    Kimberly Fearrington

    2016    Michael Jones

    2017    Jessica Grinnell

    2018    Lauren Boening

    2019    Jasmine Johnson

    2020    Mary Patricia Peres-da-Silva

    2021    Eugenia Floyd (North Central Regional Teacher of the Year & North Carolina Teacher of the Year)

    2022    Brian Link (North Central Regional Teacher of the Year)

    2023    Kimberly Jones (North Central Regional Teacher of the Year)