MEDIA ADVISORY: UPDATED – Florida’s Teacher of the Year to be Named Tonight

Jul 10 • 699 Views • View Comments

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Tallahassee, Fla., July 10, 2014 – First Lady Ann Scott and Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart, along with Macy’s President Mike Krauter and Macy’s Executive Vice President and Regional Director of Stores Darlene Hanes, will announce the winner of the 2015 Florida Department of Education/Macy’s Teacher of the Year tomorrow night at a gala awards ceremony at Hard Rock Live in Orlando. The winner will be chosen from among five finalists.

The Florida Department of Education/Macy’s Teacher of the Year is chosen from more than 189,000 public school teachers by a selection committee comprised of teachers, principals, parents, and the business community. Florida’s top educator is selected on the basis of their outstanding ability to teach and communicate knowledge of the subject taught, professional development, philosophy of teaching, and exceptional school and community service. The winner must also show a superior capacity to inspire a love of learning in students of all backgrounds and abilities.

The five Teacher of the Year finalists are below.

  • Jill Espinosa, an ESOL Teacher at Belle Terre Elementary School in Flagler County;
  • Lyndsey Matheny, K-6 Science and Math Teacher at Citrus Elementary School in Indian River County;
  • Kevin Ford, Performing Arts, Band Director and Music Teacher at Tarpon Springs High School in Pinellas County;
  • Christie Bassett, a K-12 Art Teacher at Highlands Grove Elementary School in Polk County; and
  • Daryl Cullipher, an English Language Arts and Teaching Academy Teacher at St. Augustine High School in St. Johns County.

WHAT: Teacher of the Year Awards Gala

WHEN: Thursday, July 10, 2014
6:30 p.m. – Gala begins

WHERE: Hard Rock Live at Universal Studios Orlando
6050 Universal Boulevard

Note: Interested media should RSVP to Georgi Pipkin at to make coverage arrangements.


Live Stream begins July 10 at 6:25 p.m. EDT to the end of the Awards Ceremony between approximately 8:30-9:00 p.m.

For more information about the Florida Department of Education, visit


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