News Media Invited to Attend Awards Ceremony
- Press Release
For Immediate Release – May 10, 2023
Contact: Teri Pimentel / Communications 831.784.4245 (o), 831-596-8518 (c)
Monterey County Office of Education Recognizes Teachers of the Year,
Classified School Employees of the Year, and
Overall 2024 Teacher of the Year
Friday, May 12, 2023
5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Embassy Suites, Seaside, CA
News Media Invited to Attend Awards Ceremony
Salinas, Calif. – The Monterey County Office of Education is honoring Teacher of the Year and Classified School Employee of the Year award recipients at an event being held on Friday at the Embassy Suites. The Teacher of the Year and Classified School Employee of the Year Program is an opportunity to recognize school staff members who go above and beyond to support the education of public school students from preschool through twelfth grade.
Teachers in four categories (Elementary School, Middle School, High School, and Special Education) have been chosen as Monterey County Teachers of the Year. One overall winner was selected to represent Monterey County as the nominee for consideration in the California Department of Education’s (CDE) 2024 Teacher of the Year Program. The winners are:
- Ms. Tiffany Lewis, Elementary School Teacher, King City Union School District – Overall Winner
- Mr. Milton Hambly, Middle School Teacher, King City Union School District
- Mr. Jason Nicholson, High School Teacher, Monterey Peninsula Unified School District
- Ms. Vianna Espinoza, Special Education Teacher, North Monterey County Unified School District
Classified School Employees representing nine classified categories (Clerical and Administrative Services, Custodial and Maintenance Services, Food and Nutrition Services, Health and Student Services, Paraprofessional Services, Security Services, Skilled Trade Services, Technical Services, and Transportation Services) have been chosen as Monterey County Classified School Employees of the Year. Award winners were nominated for consideration in the California Department of Education’s 2023 Classified Employee of the Year Program. The winners are:
- Ms. Kenya Hobson, Clerical and Administrative Services, Monterey Peninsula Unified School District
- Mr. Angel Torres, Custodial and Maintenance Services, King City Union School District
- Ms. Christina Contreras, Food and Nutrition Services, Monterey County Office of Education
- Ms. Araceli Contreras, Health and Student Services, Greenfield Union School District
- Ms. Araceli Godinez, Paraprofessional Services, San Lucas Union School District
- Mr. Heriberto Garcia, Security Services, Salinas Union High School District
- Mr. Felipe Oviedo, Skilled Trades Services, Monterey Peninsula Unified School District
- Mr. Jim Wallace, Technical Services, Gonzales Unified School District
- Ms. Silvia Luna-Gutierrez, Transportation Services, North Monterey County Unified School District
The Monterey County Office of Education is also pleased to announce that Tiffany Lewis of El Rey Elementary School in the King City School District has been named the overall 2024 County Teacher of the Year. She was selected from Monterey County’s 24 school districts and will represent the county at the state level competition later this year.
Ms. Lewis believes that students learn best when they are in a safe and loving environment. She feels it is important that we think about the whole child, rather than only the academic part of them, and that it is important for teachers to build healthy relationships with their students. Ms. Lewis gets to know her students' backgrounds, needs, interests, and learning styles, which helps them learn to the best of their ability. She feels that her greatest contribution to being a teacher is her belief that all students have the ability to learn and grow no matter where they begin when entering a classroom.
The Monterey County Office of Education is honored to recognize all of our district awardees with a cash prize made possible through a donation by Chevron. Each award winner was provided a $500 cash prize. The overall winner (Ms. Lewis) was awarded an additional $500, with her cash prize totaling $1,000.
“The Teacher of the Year and Classified School Employee of the Year Program recognizes school employees who are dedicated and passionate about improving students’ learning,” said Monterey County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Deneen Guss. "The Program recognizes those that go above and beyond the call of duty to positively influence the lives of our children and their future.”
Each of the category award winners, as well as all nominees, will be recognized at the awards ceremony on Friday, May 12, 2023 starting at 5:00 p.m. at the Embassy Suites in Seaside, California. If you are planning to attend, please reach out to Teri Pimentel.
For information on all award winners and nominees, please visit the Monterey County Office of Education webpage at: https://www.montereycoe.org/about-us/communications/mcoe-recognitions-and-events/toycsey-program-2023