Position: Physical Education Teacher and Wrestling Coach
School: Valley View Middle School
School District: Mt. Diablo Unified School District
City, State: Pleasant Hill, CA
About the Nominee: Cory Salmon is an encouraging presence at Valley View Middle School. He takes kids with lower self-esteem under his wing and gives them hope and a sense of belonging. His impact changes the lives of many students, who may enter middle school with negative attitudes and a lack direction. Coach Salmon seeks out these students and encourages them join the wrestling team, which becomes a turning point in many student’s lives. After their experience, they get better grades, join other school organizations, and take their academic careers more seriously. The founder and coach of the team, Coach Salmon recycles bottles and cans to earn money for the program, often reaching into his own pocket to help lower-income students pay their team fees. He ensures each students can get a ride to practice or tournaments. Countless students have seen Coach Salmon’s impact not only on their lives, but on the entire school community.
Position: 1st Grade Teacher
School: W.M. Anderson Primary School
School District: Williamsburg County School District
City, State: Kingstree, SC
About the Nominee: Keshiea Scott is a creative and effective teacher who makes a great impact in the lives of her young students. She models good behaviors and reading strategies to help her students develop sharp cognitive skills. An advocate of collaborative learning, Ms. Scott believes there is always some way each student can contribute to a group. Frequent feedback is always given to the students in her classroom, and a variety of methods are employed to improve performance and help students achieve at or above their grade level. Aside from working with parents and administrators, she provides emotional support, instructional support, and behavioral support for her students on a daily basis. In and out of the classroom, she bonds with her students on a personal level by sitting with them on the floor reading, conversing and playing with them. Through these interactions, she helps the students to develop warm, supportive relationships. For her work, she has won several district and school awards and often presents her teaching methods to her colleagues. She serves on many committees and councils and is currently the 1st Grade Team Leader and Language Arts Chair at her school. Ms. Scott is a dynamic and creative force who had dedicated herself to the success of her students.
Position: Assistant Principal
School: South Miami Senior High
School District: Miami-Dade County Public Schools
City, State: Miami, FL
About the Nominee: Mr. Clinton B. Neilly is an outstanding individual. He is an Assistant Principal at South Miami Senior High and a very important person to many students. He is always available to any student or teacher who needs his assistance and will take time out of his personal life to help them out. He is the supervisor of the Junior ROTC program at the school and has been a great supporter of their efforts. He often speaks at important events and ceremonies and has helped create a friendly atmosphere in the school environment, where he takes charge when he needs to get things done. His motivation and dedication to South Miami Senior High is extraordinary. He will never let anyone down, never give up on anyone, and will always stick with that individual or group of individuals to see them succeed.