Meet 16 Innovative Teachers from Across The Nation: Finalists for the 2016 Allen Distinguished Educators Award

By Jenny Burns, Community Coordinator for Allen Distinguished Educators
February 2, 2016


We are proud to introduce you to 16 exceptional teachers from across the U.S. who are finalists for the $25,000 Allen Distinguished Educators (ADE) Award! These exceptional teachers are positively impacting their communities and schools by providing their students with hands-on authentic learning, student-directed projects, and by giving them the skills and concepts they will need to succeed in the 21st century..
 
Join us in welcoming the class of 2016 ADEs. The ADE program will publicly announce seven awardees on at The 2016 Allen Distinguished Educators Awards Reception on Tuesday, March 8, 2016 at SXSWedu.
 
A Paul G. Allen initiative, the ADE program was developed based the belief that innovation is a key driver in improving learning opportunities for young people. This program recognizes K-12 teachers across the nation who are redefining excellence and reinventing the classroom through innovative practices, projects and programs around computer science, engineering and/or entrepreneurship.

MEET ALYSON NELSON:

Alyson teaches 11th and 12th grade at Nikola Tesla STEM High School in Redmond, WA. She is leading and developing the Advanced Biomedical Engineering: Discovering Passion through Innovative Design bio-medical engineering program. Learn more about Alyson Nelson.
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MEET ASHLEY GREENWAY:

Ashley teaches 1st grade at Elm Street Elementary in Rome, GA. She is "STEM"ulating Young Minds with her project-based computer science, engineering, and entrepreneurship program that incorporates real-world applications and hands-on learning. Learn more about Ashley Greenway.
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MEET BETH WHITE, COURTNEY BRYANT & REGINALD O'NEILL:

This dynamic teaching team works to vertically integrate curriculum from Kindergarten through 11th grade at Charles R. Drew Charter School in Atlanta, GA. They are leading and developing the Drew Design program with an engineering and entrepreneurship focus. Learn more about Beth White, Courtney Bryant and Reginald O'Neill.
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MEET BRANDON LEE:

Brandon teaches Kindergarten through 5th grade at High Tech Elementary in San Marcos, CA. He is leading and developing the Engineering Exploratory program through collaborative hands-on and project-based learning. Learn more about Brandon Lee.
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MEET CHRIS BARTLO & NICHOLAS NOHNER:

This diligent teaching team is leading and developing computer science curriculum for high schools in Portland, OR. They teach Wilson High School Computer Science using flipped classrooms to differentiate instruction for 9th through 12th graders at Wilson High School. Learn more about Chris Bartlo & Nicholas Nohner.
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MEET DAWN DUPRIEST & TRACEY WINEY:

This energetic teaching duo is leading and developing the Engineering Brightness program with 6th through 8th graders at Preston Middle School in Fort Collins, CO emphasizing real-world applications and project-based learning. Learn more about Dawn DuPriest and Tracey Winey.

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MEET JODIE WOODRUFF:

Jodie teaches 9th through 12th grade at The Metropolitan Regional Career and Technical Center (The Met) in Providence, RI. She is leading and developing the Met Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship program through student-directed hands-on learning. Learn more about Jodie Woodruff.
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MEET KATE ALLENDER, MELISSA WRENCHEY & MIKE TOWN:

This enthusiastic teaching team works together to bring computer science, engineering and entrepreneurship education to 9th through 12th graders at Nikola Tesla STEM High School in Redmond, WA. These three are working together to lead and develop the Integrating Engineering and Technology Utilizing Contest Based mentorships and Partnership Between Rural and Suburban Schools To Address Societal Problems program. Learn more about Kate Allender, Melissa Wrenchey and Mike Town.
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MEET LINA ROSE, LINDSEY OWN & COLIN MONAGHAN:

This energetic team integrates computer science, engineering and entrepreneurship at The Evergreen School in Shoreline, WA. Their Build Imagine Grow program incorporates hands-on projects and activities for Kindergarten through 8th graders. Learn more about Lina Rose, Lindsey Own and Colin Monaghan.
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MEET MATT MEYERS:

Matt Meyers teaches 9th through 12th grade at Greenwich High School in Greenwich, CT. He is leading and developing the CodeGHS computer science and entrepreneurship program that includes app development, game development, website development and community involvement. Learn more about Matt Meyers.
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MEET RICH LEHRER:

Rich Lehrer teaches 6th through 8 grade at Brookwood School in Manchester-by-the-Sea, MA. He is leading and developing the Authentic Learning At the Boundaries (A-LAB) computer science & engineering program centered around real-world problems and innovative student-created solutions. Learn more about Rich Lehrer.
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MEET PATRICK DEMPSEY & ROB RAMBACH:

This highly collaborative teaching team teaches engineering & computer science to 8th graders at Hixson Middle School in Webster Groves, MO. They are leading and developing the Learning Science Through Makerspace program that integrates science, engineering and computer science concepts. Learn more about Patrick Dempsey and Rob Rambach.

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MEET SHANA BOWEN:

Shana Bowen teaches second grade at Somerset Elementary School in Bellevue, WA. She is leading and developing a highly engaging engineering program with her 2nd grade class by innovating existing curriculum and re-thinking approaches to meet learning standards with design thinking. Learn more about Shana Bowen.
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MEET SHARON WEEMS:

Sharon Weems teaches Kindergarten through 5th grade at Stokes-Beard Technology & Community Magnet School in Columbus, MS. She is leading and developing the SBTV Animation Studio program that includes a computer science and entrepreneurship focus. Learn more about Sharon Weems.
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MEET TAYLOR WILLIAMS:

Taylor Williams is a forward-thinking 7th grade teacher at Excel Public Charter School in Kent, WA. He is leading and developing the Computational Thinking at Excel program that incorporates both computer science and engineering education. Learn more about Taylor Williams.
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MEET TRENTON HALL:

Trenton Hall teaches 9th through 12th grade math and computer science at Brenham High School in Brenham, TX. Trenton is leading and developing the BHS Computer Science program as well as the afterschool Evolv3D labs that exposes students to real-life applications for computer science and engineering through engaging student-directed projects. Learn more about Trenton Hall.
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Comments (3)
Avatar
Jenny Burns
2/9/2016 10:50:30 AM

Allen Distinguished Educators Moderator
Hi Joe!! You are so right, these teachers all have so many great ideas to share :) Did any ideas in particular inspire you?

Avatar
Joe Thompson
2/9/2016 10:38:59 AM

Teacher from Annapolis, MD
Lots of cool ideas here!

Avatar
Jenny Burns
2/5/2016 3:43:29 PM

Allen Distinguished Educators Moderator
Congrats to these exceptional teachers!