R.E.B. Awards Program Celebrates 25th Anniversary

32 outstanding educators receive $175,000 in 2012


Above: Richmond District Finalists

(RICHMOND, VA) – On November 12th, the R.E.B. Awards for Teaching Excellence celebrated something beyond the outstanding public school teachers who make up this year’s class of honorees. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the esteemed awards program, which offers an opportunity to reflect on its impact over the years.

Inspired by the vision of Rudy and Esther Bunzl, the R.E.B. Awards began in 1988 as an innovative approach to strengthening public education through the recognition of skilled, passionate and committed teachers in our local school districts (Chesterfield, Hanover, Henrico, Richmond and Department of Correctional Education). Since the program’s inception, the R.E.B Foundation has partnered with The Community Foundation to award over $2.7 million to honor 647 classroom teachers and support 364 professional development grants. In a recent evaluation of the program, 92% of teachers reported they benefitted both personally and professionally from winning the award and 57% noted that it encouraged them to stay in the field of education.

Throughout the years, recipients of the award have continued their own education, attended professional workshops and traveled all over the world – a luxury many teachers admit would not have been possible without the R.E.B. program. Lisa Williams, a 2009 winner, used her grant to explore her African American heritage with a life-changing journey. Beginning with Ghana, West Africa to explore the hub of transatlantic slave trade, Williams toured the American Midwest to visit sites that symbolize mobility, endurance and pride for African Americans—all with one grant for being a distinguished educator in Richmond. “Teaching is a humble and quiet career, in which we as educators never fully realize our impact.” The R.E.B. Award gave Williams a chance to shine, with the confidence and experience to inspire many teachers like her.

in 2012, an impressive group of 32 finalists were selected from 154 original nominations. Though only half of the finalists received professional development grants, the runner-ups received $750 grants in recognition of their hard work and dedication to their craft.  If you have an opportunity to meet the following finalists, please congratulate them on their accomplishments on behalf of students throughout our region.  To view a list of funded projects, please click here.

Ryan Abbott Cosby High School
Carolyn Alley* Holman Middle School
Cheryl Baker Clover Hill Elementary School
Taylor Beall Atlee High School
Polly Bosse Colonial Trail Elementary School
Cecilia Boswell* Maggie L. Walker Governor’s School
Barbara Brehon John H. Smyth High School
Philip Brooks* Hopkins Road Elementary School
Rachel Christiansen* Robious Middle School
Jacquelyn Davis Ruby F. Carver Elementary School
Elizabeth Gaglio* Chamberlayne Elementary School
Michael Guyer Deep Run High School
Joy Hurst Elizabeth Davis Middle School
Lori Kalber* Overby-Sheppard Elementary School
Roger Lattimer* Cosby High School
Margaret Marquis Tuckahoe Middle School
Selene Marsh* John Randolph Tucker High School
Carrol Ann May Bensley Elementary School
Cynthia McCreary* South Anna Elementary School
Shaunté Means* Woodville Elementary School
Robert Meister* John Randolph Tucker High School
Greenlee Naughton* Hanover High School
LaChaunne Perry* Woodville Elementary School
Denise Quigley Greenfield Elementary School
Rodney Robinson* Armstrong High School
Michael-Jon Rodney Matoaca High School
Kay Rowe C.E. Curtis Elementary School
Beth Anne Sayegh Grange Hall Elementary School
Cynthia Steiner* Spring Run Elementary School
Stephanie Stockman Hanover High School
Christen Tulli Pocahontas Middle School
Suhani Vakil* Swansboro Elementary School