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 IGNN: Main State Page Press Release


May 9, 2014

Governor Quinn Congratulates 2014 Golden Apple Award Winners
Recognizes Teacher Appreciation Week, Thanks Teachers Across Illinois for Making a Difference

CHICAGO – Governor Pat Quinn today congratulated this year’s 2014 Golden Apple Award winners for their excellence in teaching and thanked them for making a difference in the future of Illinois’ students. The award, which is one of the education community’s most prestigious, was presented this week to ten outstanding teachers for excellence during National Teacher Appreciation Week.

“I congratulate each of our Illinois’ Golden Apple Award Winners – you are truly the best of the best,” Governor Quinn said. “Our teachers educate, motivate and support students across Illinois and in many ways serve as the backbone of our society. It’s fitting during National Teacher Appreciation Week that we thank this year’s winners and all teachers across the state for making a difference in the lives of Illinois’ youngest citizens.”

The Golden Apple Award is presented by Golden Apple, a leader in advancing the teaching profession in Illinois for 29 years. The award recognizes outstanding teachers for their role in helping build a strong, educated society. This year’s Golden Apple Award winners are as follows:

  • Luke Albrecht, Crown Community Fine Arts Academy, Chicago
  • Mary Benton, Hawthorn Middle School South, Vernon Hills
  • Joseph Casanovas, Helen C .Peirce School of International Studies, Chicago
  • Roosevelt Griffin, Gwendolyn Brooks Middle School, Harvey
  • Madeline Kobayashi, Philip Rogers Elementary School, Chicago
  • Michael Novak, Park View School, Morton Grove
  • Rozy Patel, Edgebrook School, Chicago
  • Anand Sukumaran, Mary Gage Peterson Elementary, Chicago
  • Melissa Talaber Matwyshyn, St. Nicholas Cathedral School, Chicago
  • Margot Van Dyke, O’Neill Middle School, Downers Grove

The 2014 honorees were selected from a pool of 620 nominations and 272 applicants of 4th to 8th grade teachers throughout the Chicago metropolitan area. Golden Apple winners receive an honorarium, a tuition-free semester sabbatical at Northwestern University and become lifetime members of the Golden Apple Academy of Educators, which supports and assists teachers in developing their skills and encourages students to pursue a career in education. John Quinn, the Governor’s younger brother and long-time history teacher and boys basketball coach at Fenwick High School in Oak Park, received the Golden Apple award in 1992.


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