NJDOE News
For More Information Contact the Public Information Office:
    Jon Zlock
    Kathryn Forsyth
    609-292-1126

For Release: December 16, 2004


DOE Honors State’s Top Teachers

Twenty-seven of the best teachers in New Jersey were honored today during the annual Recognizing Educator Achievement in Leadership (REAL) luncheon hosted by Commissioner of Education William L. Librera.

"Sound learning stems from good teaching," Commissioner Librera said. "Today, we recognize some of our finest educators. These teachers are successful because they care, because they are innovative, and because they achieve results — great results — each and every day."

"This Administration remains committed to quality schooling and quality teachers," said Acting Gov. Richard Codey. "One cannot exist without the other. We share the DOE’s vision of highlighting and sharing the best practices, policies and programs that work. Today is one more example of just how strong education is in New Jersey."

Honored during the luncheon were the 2004 New Jersey Teacher of the Year, the Teachers of the Year from the 21 counties, the Non-Public School Teacher of the Year, the State-Run Facilities Teacher of the Year, New Jersey’s two Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award recipients and the state’s two finalists for the 2004 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

The teachers received their awards during the REAL conference, a professional development seminar conducted by DOE and past award winners for this year’s honorees. The conference was held at the Doubletree Hotel in Somerset.

Here is the list of the teachers honored today:

New Jersey Teacher of the Year:

Peggy Stewart, social studies, Vernon Township High School

Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award Recipients:

Theresa Bordo, fourth-grade, Cunningham Elementary School, Vineland
Jill Stauffer, kindergarten, George Washington Elementary School in Bergen County

Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching Finalists:

Michele Mandara, Holland Brook School, Readington Township
Ashley Rothbard-Berk, Travell Elementary School, Ridgewood

County Teachers of the Year:

Atlantic: Kellie Carman-Davis, French, Pleasantville High School
Bergen: William Schneberger, visual arts, Northern Valley Regional High School, Demarest
Burlington: Gary Williams, science, chemistry and biology, Seneca High School, Lenape Regional High School District
Camden: Kathleen McMahon, fourth-grade, Alice Costello Elementary School, Brooklawn
Cape May: Karen Robertson, eighth-grade Spanish, Ocean City Middle School
Cumberland: Eric Reuf, health and physical education, Edward R. Johnstone School, Vineland
Essex: Gwendolyn Furr, seventh-grade language arts and literacy, Union Avenue School, Irvington
Gloucester: Mary Byatt, fifth-grade social studies, Birches Elementary School, Washington Township
Hudson: Deborah Shine-Doherty, social studies, vocational math, science and communications, Jose Marti Middle School, Union City
Hunterdon: Don Roberts, grade 12 English, North Hunterdon High School
Mercer: Janice Fay, second-grade, Antheil Elementary School, Ewing
Middlesex: Lynn Audet, kindergarten, School #10 – the 21st Century School, Perth Amboy
Monmouth: Stuart Cristo, history, Keyport High School
Morris: Barbara Hardcastle, library media specialist, Ellen T. Briggs Elementary School, Lake Hopatcong
Ocean: Julie Shutz, fifth-grade, Frederick A. Priff Elementary School, Ocean Township
Passaic: Norbert Herold, technology education, Lakeside Middle School, Pompton Lakes
Salem: Suzanne Landolfi, business education, Salem High School
Somerset: Christine Doane, third-grade, Irene E. Feldkirchner Elementary School, Green Brook
Sussex: Peggy Stewart, social studies, Vernon Township High School
Union: Lisa Ventura, fourth-grade, Brookside Place School, Cranford
Warren: Barbara Dalrymple, health and physical education, Franklin Township Elementary School, Washington

State Facility Teacher of the Year:

Bert Raynor, pre-vocational and life skills, Arthur Brisbane Treatment Center, Farmington

Non-Public School Teacher of the Year:

Colleen Sullivan, English, DePaul Catholic High School, Wayne

About the Awards Programs

New Jersey’s Teacher of the Year is selected annually in a process that begins at the grassroots level. During the school year, school-level and district-level teachers of the year are selected. Each spring, county level teachers of the year are chosen and their detailed applications are sent to Trenton, where they are reviewed by a panel of educators representing a cross-section of the state’s education community. The state teacher of the years is selected from among the 21 county-level award recipients.

Since 2002, the Milken Family Foundation and the DOE have recognized outstanding educators who continue to learn and are essential in fostering student growth, improving schools and enhancing the education profession. Each fall, the DOE and Milken Family Foundation host special assemblies in which National Educator Award recipients are presented with checks for $25,000 from the Milken Family Foundation.

The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching is the nation’s highest honor for teachers of mathematics and science. It recognizes grades K-6 and 7-12 in alternate years. Each national award consists of a $10,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to the recipient, to be spent at the teacher’s direction. The award also includes expense-paid activities in Washington, D.C., where the award winners receive certificates signed by the President.

More information on the award recipients and programs is found online here:

For additional information, please contact the Department of Education Public Information Office at (609) 292-1126.