OKLAHOMA CITY - Thirty Oklahoma City area teachers from seven school districts were honored on Saturday, as part of the “My Teacher, My Hero” initiative in cooperation with the Big 12 Conference, the Oklahoma City All-Sports Association and the College Football Playoff (CFP) Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teachers program. Additionally, the teachers were each surprised with a $1,000 gift card from DonorsChoose.org that can be used for classroom supplies and equipment.
Earlier this year, kindergarten through sixth-grade students from seven districts in the Greater Oklahoma City area were encouraged to nominate a teacher for the “My Teacher, My Hero” program and explain why their teacher had made an impact on their lives. Over 1,600 nominations were submitted during the two-month contest.
The teachers were recognized at halftime of Saturday’s Phillips 66 Big 12 Women’s Basketball Championship quarterfinal matchup between Oklahoma and TCU at Oklahoma City’s Chesapeake Energy Arena. Many of the educators were joined by their students for the ceremony. During the recognition, the Big 12 in cooperation with OKC All-Sports and the CFP Foundation presented each teacher with $1,000 gift cards for the classroom, totaling $30,000.
“The teaching profession has a profound impact on our society, and teachers do not get thanked enough for what they do,” said Big 12 Conference Commissioner Bob Bowlsby. “These 30 outstanding teachers are tremendous role models for our young people and are truly deserving of recognition.”
“We are grateful for the opportunity to partner with the Big 12 Conference and CFP Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teachers program, said All-Sports Executive Director, Tim Brassfield. “To be able to invest and support our local classrooms and teachers is very special. Congratulations to all the teachers and their students.”
Since the 2016 football season, the Big 12 and the CFP Foundation have donated DonorChoose.org gifts cards to over 200 teachers through the CFP Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teachers platform. Those educators were nominated by Big 12 Champions for Life student-athletes each of whom nominated a teacher who impacted them academically.
Twelve educators were honored from Oklahoma City Public Schools, followed by nine from Moore Public Schools. Other school districts included were Bethany (1), Enid (1), Mid-Del (2), Newcastle (3) and Norman (2).
The CFP Foundation is the charitable arm of the College Football Playoff, supporting education across the country. The CFP Foundation’s primary platform, Extra Yard for Teachers, elevates the teaching profession by inspiring and empowering teachers through the implementation of programs in four focus areas: resources, recognition, recruitment and professional development. The CFP Foundation utilizes multiple partnerships to execute its initiatives and support positive educational outcomes.
2018 “My Teacher, My Hero” Honorees
Teacher School District Grade
Kiley Donley Bethany Elementary Bethany 4th
Richele Irwin Adams Enid 4th
Kristy Bowen Jefferson Norman 1st
Tonya Stevenson-Ford Lincoln Norman 4th
Pamela Allison Epperly Heights Mid-Del 5th
Jessie Brown Midwest City Elementary Mid-Del 2nd
Rayni Zerm Broadmoore Moore 6th
Philip Nguyen Bryant Moore Music
Regina Anders Fairview Moore 5th
Jennifer Bishop Eastlake Moore 4th
Natalie Leach Heritage Trails Moore 5th
Dr. Amara Lett Schook Houchin Moore 6th
Karen Holsinger Sky Ranch Moore K
Kristin Kirch Timber Creek Moore Music
Emily Myers Wayland Bonds Moore 1st
Mandi Hahn Newcastle Elementary Newcastle 3rd
Susan O’Brien Newcastle Elementary Newcastle 3rd
Karen Wynne Newcastle Elementary Newcastle 3rd
Hayley Young Adams Oklahoma City 1st
Harold Smith Green Pastures Oklahoma City K
Roxie Stiles Heronville Oklahoma City K
Malorie Myers Jackson Oklahoma City 3rd
Samantha O’Sheilds Kaiser Oklahoma City 4th
Gena Fincher Nichols Hills Oklahoma City 5th
James Poulin Prairie Queen Oklahoma City 3rd
Amanda Trimble Southern Hills Oklahoma City 5th
Jonathan Johnson Stand Watie Oklahoma City 4th
James Durley Telstar Oklahoma City 5th
Irene Garcia Martinez Van Buren Oklahoma City 2nd
Shawntae Ballard Willbrook Oklahoma City 5th