Franklin Initiative Announces 2012 Educators of the Year Awardees
The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce Plans
12th Annual Educators of the Year Awards Event
Bloomington, IN – October 4, 2012 – The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce’s Franklin Initiative today announced the 2012 Educators of the Year recipients who will be honored at 12th Annual Educators of the Year dinner to be held Thursday, November 8 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Bloomington/Monroe County Convention Center. Since 2001, the Franklin Initiative has supported excellence in education with the annual awards ceremony which recognizes the best teachers and programs in accredited schools across Monroe County.
Awardees are selected from a pool of nominees from across Monroe County by a committee composed of public sector, business, and education leaders. This year, eight individuals and one educational program will be honored at the community celebration. In addition, the coveted Lifetime Achievement Award will be given to Dr. Janice Bizzari for her lifetime of outstanding commitment to education. Dr. Bizzari has retired as principal of University Elementary School, and is currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Indiana University School of Education’s Gifted and Talented Programs.
“Through this event, we recognize the efforts of our community’s educators who go above and beyond to educate our community’s young people,” said Christy Gillenwater, President & C.E.O. of the Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce. “The Chamber and its Franklin Initiative appreciate all that our educators do - not just for the students but for our community.”
In recognition of their outstanding service and dedication to the field of education, fellow educators and Monroe County youth, the following eight individuals will be honored with 2012 Outstanding Educator Awards:
- Brandy Abel, First Grade Teacher, Edgewood Primary School
- Bob Austin, Band Director (Retired), Jackson Creek Middle School
- Jody Duncan, Science Teacher, Bloomington High School South
- Taji Gibson, English Teacher, Bloomington High School North
- Mary Beth Hannah-Hansen, English Teacher and Department Chair, Bloomington High School South
- Molly Jeon, Japanese/ENL Teacher, Bloomington High School North
- Amy Phillips, Music Teacher Stinesville Elementary School and Edgewood Junior High School
- Tommy Richardson, Principal, Lakeview Elementary School
Again this year, Bloomington-based company Solution Tree is donating $500 to the school of each Outstanding Educator. In addition, Solution Tree will pay all expenses for each awardee to attend a Solution Tree Institute, or two-day workshop anywhere in the country.
“Not only is Solution Tree providing support to the schools, but they are also investing in the professional development of the educators, helping to reinforce the importance of lifelong learning,” said Gillenwater. She also applauds the support of the events’ other presenting sponsors General Electric, State Farm Insurance, Markey’s Rental and Staging, and Duane Busick Video Production, who will assist with the award presentations during the event.
Hoosier Youth Philharmonic, the combined Bloomington High School North and Bloomington High School South orchestras, will be honored with a Leading Light Award for their innovative program that enhances our education community.
To register for the 12th Annual Educator of the Year event, please contact the Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce at 812.336.6381, or email Carol Kelly, Event Coordinator, at ckelly@ChamberBloomington.org. Tickets are $30 per person; children in grades K-12 are $15 and there is no charge for Pre-K.
For more information about The Chamber’s Franklin Initiative, visit www.FranklinInitiative.com.
About The Chamber’s Franklin Initiative
For more than a decade, the Chamber's Franklin Initiative (FI) has helped to facilitate career awareness while helping students develop the skills necessary to succeed in employment or in continuing education. FI programs such as Classroom Speakers, Reality Store, and Job Shadowing increase student engagement through real-world connections, as well as provide the critical link between the education and business communities. The Franklin Initiative’s Graduation Coach Initiative provides individualized counseling and career preparation for struggling students to increase the graduation rate in Monroe County students.
Christy Gillenwater, President & CEO
Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce
# # #