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History Teacher of the Year


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The Iowa Department of Education co-sponsors the “History Teacher of the Year” award for K-12 teachers who have at least three years of classroom teaching experience and can demonstrate a commitment to the teaching of American history in creative ways. Candidates may be nominated by friends, family, students, or colleagues. The winner of the state award receives a prize package including a certificate of recognition, a $1,000 award, a collection of classroom resources to be presented in their name to the school library, and an invitation to participate in a Gilder Lehrman Institute summer seminar. From the state winners, one is recognized as the National History Teacher of the Year.

The Iowa winner is honored at the Iowa Teacher of the Year Recognition Event.

The National History Teacher of the Year is honored at an awards ceremony in New York City, NY, and awarded a $10,000 prize.

The award is co-sponsored by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and Preserve America.

Nomination Information

National History Teacher of the Year Nomination Form - Submission deadline for the 2022 award is April 30, 2022.

Visit the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History website to learn more.

Past Honorees

Year Name School City
2022 Suzann Turner Nashua-Plainfield Middle/High School Nashua
2021 Amber Davison Hoover High School Des Moines
2020 Janet Wills Southeast Valley Middle School Burnside
2019 Kelly Steffen Vinton-Shellsburg High School Vinton
2018 Kimberly Meller-Angus Northview Middle School Ankeny
2017 Rebecca Helland Pella School Pella
2016 James Heithoff Winterset School Winterset
2015 No winner chosen    
2014 James Hardy East Union Community School Afton
2013 Josh Culberson Lamoni Elementary School Lamoni
2012 Monte DeArmoun Northwood-Kensett Junior-Senior High School Northwood
2011 Lisa Zylstra Jefferson Intermediate School Pella
2010 Brian Connick Algona Community High School Algona
2009 Donna Wynn Clark Elementary School Sioux City
2008 Gina Hanna Prairie Central Springs Middle School Nora Springs
2007 Kimberly Heckart Prairie Ridge Elementary School Cedar Rapids
2006 Nancy J. Daley St. Patrick Elementary School Waukon
2005 Ron VanStrien Southeast Warren High School Liberty Center
2004 James Daniel Valley High School West Des Moines