National Science Teachers Association Announces Recipients of its 2018 Teacher Awards Program

Top Science Educators From Around the Country Honored

ARLINGTON, Va.--()--The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) announced the winners of the 2018 NSTA Teacher Awards program, which honors K–12 teachers, principals, professors and other science education professionals for their outstanding work and achievement in science education. The awards will be presented at a special banquet and ceremony on Friday, March 16, 2018, at the NSTA National Conference on Science Education in Atlanta, Georgia.

NSTA will present its highest and most prestigious award, the Robert H. Carleton Award for National Leadership in the Field of Science Education, to Cary Sneider. The Robert H. Carleton Award, which is sponsored by ExxonMobil, recognizes one individual who has made outstanding contributions to, and provided leadership in, science education at the national level and to NSTA in particular.

Sneider is currently Associate Research Professor at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, where he teaches courses in research methodology for teachers in a Master of Science Teaching (MST) degree program. Sneider also serves as a Consultant on STEM Education for the Noyce Foundation, the Stephen D. Bechtel Jr. Foundation, and on several advisory boards.

Sneider served on the Working Group for the National Science Education Standards (NRC 1996) and on the Planning Committee for the Science Framework for the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). He served as facilitator for the revision of the Washington State K–12 Science Standards in 2008–2009, as Technology and Engineering Lead for the Conceptual Framework for K–12 Science Education for the NRC in 2010, and as Co-Chair of the Planning Committee for the Technology and Engineering Literacy Framework for the 2014 NAEP. He is currently a member of the National Assessment Governing Board, which sets policy for NAEP in all subject areas.

From 1997 to 2007, Sneider was Vice President for Educator Programs at the Museum of Science in Boston, where he led development of a high school engineering curriculum, which is now published by It’s About Time. Prior to that, he served as Director of Astronomy and Physics Education at the Lawrence Hall of Science at the University of California. Over his career he has served as the principal investigator or director of more than 20 grant projects involving curriculum development, teacher education, and science center exhibits and programs.

Sneider’s research interests have focused on helping students unravel their misconceptions in science and on new ways to link science centers and schools to promote student inquiry. He has taught science at the middle and high schools in Maine, California, Costa Rica, and Micronesia. In 1997 he received the Distinguished Informal Science Education award from NSTA and in 2003 was named National Associate of the National Academy of Sciences.

NSTA is also honoring the following award recipients:

NSTA Distinguished Service to Science Education Award, partially sponsored by the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP)

  • Page Keeley, NSTA Past President (2008-09), Ft. Myers, Florida
  • Brett Moulding, Director, Partnership for Effective Science Teaching and Learning, Ogden, Utah
  • Juliana Texley, NSTA Past President (2014-15), Lesley University, Central Michigan University, Boca Raton, Florida

NSTA Distinguished Teaching Award, partially sponsored by the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP)

  • Kristin Rademaker, Science Teacher, Harlem High School, Machesney Park, Illinois

NSTA Distinguished Informal Award, partially sponsored by the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP)

  • Andrew Hipp, Senior Scientist and Herbarium Curator, The Morton Arboretum, Lisle, Illinois
  • Claire Lannoye-Hall, Curator, Detroit Zoological Society, Royal Oak, Michigan
  • Carlos R. Villa, Director of K-12 Education Programs, National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, Tallahassee, Florida

NSTA Fellow Award

  • Kathryn Scantlebury, Science Educator, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware

NSTA Presidential Citation

  • Duane Jeffery, Professor Emeritus, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah

Angela Award

  • Alyssa Ho, Science Student, Northview Middle School, Pasadena, California

DuPont Pioneer Excellence in Agricultural Science Education Award, sponsored by DuPont Pioneer

  • Cindy Isaacs, Exceptional Cognitive Enrichment Learning STEM Teacher, Indian River School District, Georgetown, Delaware
  • Wendy Smith, Science Instructor, Powell High School, Powell, Wyoming

eCYBERMISSION Team Advisor National Recognition, sponsored by the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP)

  • 6th Grade Teacher Awardee: Ramu Ramachandran, Kennedy Junior High School, Lisle, Illinois
  • 7th Grade Teacher Awardee: Kathy Dinman, Kailua Intermediate School, Kailua, Hawaii
  • 8th Grade Teacher Awardee: Gretchen Hein, Lake Linden-Hubbell School, Lake Linden, Michigan
  • 9th Grade Teacher Awardee: Nixon Xavier, STEM4Girls, Portland, Oregon

Faraday Science Communicator Award

  • Neil Lamb, Vice President for Educational Outreach HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology, Huntsville, Alabama

Maitland P. Simmons Memorial Award for New Teachers

  • Sheila Alger, Science Teacher, Frederick County, VA Public Schools – Northwestern, Regional Educational Programs, Winchester, Virginia
  • Michelle Bayly, Science Teacher, Fesler Jr. High School, Santa Maria, California
  • Jacqueline Beaupre, Science Teacher, Hingham High School, Hingham, Massachusetts
  • Chelsea Bernien, Science Teacher, West Kindergarten Center, Baraboo, Wisconsin
  • Johanna Brown, Science Teacher, Pullman High School, Pullman, Washington
  • Charlotte Crone, Science Teacher, Josephine Dobbs Clement Early College High School, Durham, North Carolina
  • Meghan Denson, Science Teacher, South Shades Crest Elementary School, Hoover, Alabama
  • Covey Denton, Science Teacher, Greenfield School, Wilson, North Carolina
  • Jessica Guccione, Science Teacher, Venado Middle School, Irvine, California
  • David Hansen Jr., Science Teacher, Salisbury Middle School, Salisbury, Maryland
  • Chun H. Hsieh, Science Teacher, Lakewood High School, Sumter, South Carolina
  • Melissa Kowalski, Science Teacher, Put-in-Bay School, Put-in-Bay, Ohio
  • Lewis Naeger, Science Teacher, Lindbergh School District, St. Louis, Missouri
  • Kasey Nail, Science Teacher, Florence Middle School, Florence, Mississippi
  • Michealrose Ravalier, Science Teacher, Ivanna Eudora High School, Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Jennifer Tyler, Science Teacher, Needham B. Broughton High School, Raleigh, North Carolina

Northrop Grumman Excellence in Engineering Education Award, sponsored by the Northrop Grumman Foundation

  • Sheri Caine, Science Teacher, H.L. Richard High School, Oak Lawn, Illinois

Robert E. Yager Foundation Excellence in Teaching Awards

  • District IV Recipient: James Brown, Science Teacher, Sand Creek Middle School, Albany, New York
  • District VIII Recipient: Brian McDowell, Science Teacher, Mason County Schools, Maysville, Kentucky
  • District X Recipient: Kristen Poindexter, Science Teacher, Spring Mill Elementary School, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • District XIV Recipient: Deepa Iyer, Science Teacher, Knox Gifted Academy, Chandler, Arizona
  • District XVI Recipient: Jose Rivas, Science Teacher, Lennox Math, Science and Technology Academy, Inglewood, California

Ron Mardigian Memorial Biotechnology Explorer Award, sponsored by Bio-Rad Laboratories

  • Ray Cinti, Science Teacher, Green Mountain Valley School, South Burlington, Vermont

SeaWorld Environmental Educator of the Year Award, sponsored by SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment

  • Charlene Mauro, Teacher on Special Assignment – Santa Rosa Schools, Founder/Director of Navarre Beach Marine Science Station, Navarre Beach, Florida

Shell Science Teaching Award, sponsored by Shell

  • Awardee: Richard Embrick, Science Teacher, David Crockett Middle School, Richmond, Texas
  • Finalist: John Gensic, Science Teacher, Penn High School, Mishawaka, Indiana
  • Finalist: Annette Simpson, Science Teacher, McCleskey Middle School, Marietta, Georgia

Shell Science Lab Challenge, sponsored by Shell, outfitted by Carolina Biological Supply Company

  • Grand Prize Winner: Lauren Brown, Science Teacher, Madison Park Academy, Oakland, California
  • National Finalist: Rebecca Grella, Jennifer Costa, and Jacob Mulderig, Science Teachers, Brentwood Sonderling High School, Brentwood, New York
  • National Finalist: Melissa Altemose, Science Teacher, W.A. Pattillo Middle School, Tarboro, North Carolina
  • National Finalist: Paula Labbe, Science Teacher, Deep Creek Middle School
  • National Finalist: Toni Cascioli and Stacy Weiss, Science Teachers, Phoenix Day School for the Deaf, Phoenix, Arizona

Shell Urban Science Educator Development Award, sponsored by Shell

  • Rubi deHoyos, Science Teacher, Jim G. Martin Elementary School, San Antonio, Texas
  • Chander Jenkins, Science Teacher, South Pike High School, Magnolia, Mississippi
  • Julio Mendez, Science Teacher, Perspectives Charter School, Chicago, Illinois
  • Chelsea Reyes, Science Teacher, John Jay High School, San Antonio, Texas
  • Crystal L. Velez, Science Teacher, Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy, Hartford, Connecticut
  • Aidé Villalobos, Science Teacher, Evergreen Elementary School, Shelton, Washington
  • Eleanor Williamson, Science Teacher, Urban Assembly School of Design and Construction, New York, New York

Sylvia Shugrue Award for Elementary Teachers

  • Jayda Pugliese, Science Teacher, Andrew Jackson Elementary School, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Vernier Software & Technology Awards, sponsored by Vernier Software & Technology

  • Elementary Level: Rachel Hallett-Njuguna, Science Teacher, Goldsboro Elementary Magnet School, Sanford, Florida
  • Middle School Level: Robert Hodgdon, Science Teacher, Bryan County School District, Richmond, Georgia
  • Middle School Level: Leah LaCrosse, Science Teacher, McCormick Junior High School, Huron, Ohio
  • High School Level: George Hademenos, Science Teacher, Richardson High School, Richardson, Texas
  • High School Level: Misty Heredia, Science Teacher, Los Fresnos High School, Los Fresnos, Texas
  • High School Level: Bob Talbitzer, Science Teacher, Kearnery High School, Kearney, Nebraska
  • College Level: Marielle Postava-Davignon, Assistant Professor, Southern Vermont College, Bennington, Vermont

Wendell G. Mohling Outstanding Aerospace Educator Award

  • George Charles Allen, President/CEO, Aero Venture, Mansfield, Massachusetts

Through their hard work and dedication, these outstanding educators are making a difference," said NSTA President Dr. David Crowther. “They make science come alive for their students and help them realize the importance of science in their daily lives.”

NSTA encourages science educators to apply for its 2019 NSTA Teacher Awards. For information, visit

About NSTA

The Arlington, VA-based National Science Teachers Association is the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence in science teaching and learning, preschool through college. NSTA’s membership includes approximately 55,000 science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business representatives, and others involved in science education.


Kate Falk, 703-312-9211

Release Summary

NSTA announced the winners of the 2018 NSTA Teacher Awards program.


Kate Falk, 703-312-9211