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Teacher of the Year candidate field narrowed to 33 semifinalists

For more information, contact:
Doug Dooher
651-292-4820 (work)
651-245-6141 (cell)
Chris Williams
651-292-4816 (work)
651-245-5539 (cell)

ST. PAUL, Minn., Feb. 24, 2014 – The field of possible candidates for this year’s Minnesota Teacher of the Year honor has been narrowed to 33. A selection panel of 25 community leaders chose the semifinalists from an initial field of 128 candidates from across the state.

The panel will meet again in late March to select about 10 finalists from among the group of semifinalists. The current Minnesota Teacher of the Year, Megan Olivia Hall, will announce her successor at a banquet May 4 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington – Minneapolis South in Bloomington, Minn.

Education Minnesota, the 70,000-member statewide educators union, organizes and underwrites the Teacher of the Year program. Candidates include pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade teachers from public or private schools. The Minnesota Teacher of the Year Program also receives support from the following organizations: The SMARTer Kids Foundation, the DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington – Minneapolis South, the Harvard Club of Minnesota Foundation, United Educators Credit Union, McDonald’s Restaurants of Minnesota, Teacher Federal Credit Union, Pearson Education and Education Minnesota ESI.

Semifinalists for 2014 Minnesota Teacher of the Year are listed below by district, including the subject area and grade taught:
Anoka-Hennepin, Emily Anderson, social studies, 12
Anoka-Hennepin, Terrace (Terri) Evans, library media specialist, 9-12
Anoka-Hennepin, Jennifer Keller, elementary, 2
Anoka-Hennepin, Andrew Schwen, mathematics, 6-8
Bloomington, Beth Kiene, chemistry, 10-12
Burnsville-Eagan-Savage, Steven Orth, English and language arts, 7-9
Forest Lake, Theresa Gieschen, math, 7-12
Inver Grove Heights, Kathryn Kim Westra, elementary, 4-5
Kasson-Mantorville, Beth Postier, elementary, kindergarten, 2
Lakeville, Kim Jirik, speech language pathologist, pre-kindergarten
Lakeville, Jill Mitzo, alternative learning, 6-8
Lionsgate Academy, Crystal, Sarah Wojciechowski-Prill, theater arts, 7-12
Mahtomedi, Virginia Mancini, language arts, 9-12
Milaca, Andrew Nelson, band, 8-12
Minneapolis, John Calhoun, English, 9, 12
Minneapolis, Colette Kruc, special education, 6-8
Minneapolis, Jane Liepitz, elementary, 4
Minneapolis, Connie Rae Rubenstein, pre-kindergarten, pre-kindergarten
Montevideo, Mary Sanders, elementary, 4
Osseo, Mike Endres, earth science, 8
Osseo, Charles Nelson, Ed.D., American history, 9
Paynesville, Jennifer Andrist, health, physical education, 9-12
Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan, Michelle Betts, chemistry, 11-12
Shakopee, Billy Koenig, biology, ecology, 10, 12
Shakopee, Casey Rutherford, physics, 11-12
Sleepy Eye, Amber Franta, English and language arts, 9-12
Spring Lake Park, Jen Legatt, media specialist, 9-12
St. Paul, Charlotte Landreau, history, philosophy, dance, 11-12
Stewartville, Cheri Stageberg, math, 9
Waubun-Ogema-White Earth, Lisa Wierschke, special education, 5-12
West Metro Education Program, Gretchen Baglyos Reed, choir, 6-12
West Metro Education Program, Thomas Rademacher, English, 9-12
Winona, Lora Hill, special education, 9-12

Education Minnesota is an affiliate of the National Education Association, the American Federation of Teachers and AFL-CIO.

Education Minnesota
41 Sherburne Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55103

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