The Southern California Section’s Outstanding High School Teacher of the Year Award was renamed in 2010 to be the Paul Shin Memorial Outstanding High School Teacher of the Year Award. Paul Shin was Section Chair in 2010 when he passed away from liver cancer. Paul had been our Educational Affairs Committee Chair for many years before taking on the role of Chair. He will be remembered for his efforts in this very special award.
Do you know a deserving high school chemistry teacher for this award? He/she could have been your teacher, colleague or mentor. They don’t have to have been teaching for long although experience is a plus. Novel methods of instruction, working with chemistry teacher support organizations and special educational projects are just a few things your favorite chemistry teacher could be a part of or leading. If you know of a local high school chemistry teacher who is making a difference, please make the effort to show them how important their work is to you and their students. It’s teachers like the recipients of this award that make learning chemistry rewarding.
The winner of the Section Award will also be entered at the National ACS level for the James Conant Bryant Award and the Western Regional High School Teacher of the Year Award.
Nomination Deadline: November 15
Who can be nominated: a person actively engaged in the teaching of chemistry in high school (grades 9-12)
Who can nominate: any individual, except a member of the award committee or a currently enrolled student of the nominee, may submit one nomination or seconding letter in any given year.
What should be included in the nomination package:
- Biographical sketch of the nominee with the date of birth
- A list of publications (if any)
- A statement (no more than 1000 words) of the nominee’s achievements as a teacher of high school chemistry. The statement should demonstrate as many of the following attributes as possible:
- the quality of the candidate’s teaching (unusually effective methods of presentation should be emphasized)
- the candidate’s ability to challenge and inspire students
- extracurricular work in chemistry by the candidate, including science fairs, science clubs, and activities that stimulate the interest of young people in chemistry and related sciences
- a willingness to keep up-to-date in the field, as evidenced by pursuit of a higher degree in chemistry, enrollment in refresher courses and summer institutes, regular attendance at scientific meetings, and other means of self-improvement.
- Seconding letters are not essential, but up to 5 may be included with each nomination. Only those seconding letters that contain information about the candidate NOT provided in the nominating document will be transmitted to the selection committee. Some examples of appropriate seconding letters:
- evaluations of the teacher’s effectiveness by a supervisor, principal, colleague, or ACS members who have visited the nominee’s class
- letters from former students (letters from currently enrolled students are not acceptable)
Where to send nominations:
Nominating documents may be submitted via email to the Chair of the Outstanding Chemistry Teacher Committee at office-at-scalacs-dot-org. Note that signed documents that have been scanned are acceptable.
Nomination Deadline: Nominations must be received by the end of the business day, November 15.
- 1989 Gary Thorpe, Beverly Hills High School
- 1991 No Recipient
- 1992 Robert William Taylor, Jordan High School
- 1993 Stephen Marsden, Harvard-Westlake High School
- 1994 Michael Kemp, Quartz Hill High School
- 1995 Richard Schwartz, Torrance High School
- 1996 Richard Chapleau
- 1997 Cynthia Chubbuck
- 1998 Diane McGann
- 1999 No Recipient
- 2000 M. Patricia Noel, Campbell Hall High School
- 2001 Barbara Sitzman, Chatsworth High School
James Bryant Conant Award Recipient
- 2002 Linda Dillard, Redondo Union High School
- 2003 Judith Flint Baumwirt, Granada Hills High School
- 2004 Peter Starodub, Palos Verdes Peninsula High School
- 2005 Paul Groves, South Pasadena High School
- 2006 Wilson Kwan, Woodrow Wilson High School
- 2007 Vincent Ward, South Torrance High School
- 2008 Cherryl Vorak, Arcadia High School
- 2009 No Recipient
- 2010 Michael Morgan, Francisco Bravo Medical Magnet High School
- 2011 Dean Papadakis, South Pasadena High School
- 2012 Larry Walker, Calabasas High School
- 2013 Paul Bender, Whitney High School
- 2014 Dr. Deborah Bennett, Calabasas High School
- 2015 – No Recipient
- 2016: Paul Groves, South Pasadena High School
- 2017: Caroline Morgan, Francisco Bravo Medical Magnet High School
- 2018 – No Recipient