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For Immediate Release
May 27, 2004
Contact: Charles Pyle/DOE
(804) 371-2420
Julie Grimes/DOE
(804) 225-2775

Educators Receive Governor’s Innovative Technology Awards
Annual Technology Awards, Sponsored by America Online, Presented Today to Eight Virginia Teachers

Governor Mark Warner today honored eight elementary and high school teachers at the Fourth Annual Governor’s Innovative Technology In Education Awards during a ceremony and luncheon in Richmond. The awards, sponsored by America Online, Inc. (AOL) in conjunction with the Virginia Department of Education (DOE), recognize educators who have improved instruction through the innovative use of technology.

The winners are:
  • Diana Crites, a business and information technology teacher at Sherando High School in Frederick County
  • Debbie Dahlin, a math/computer science teacher at Northampton High School in Northampton County
  • Jennifer Dean, a language arts and social studies teacher at Crystal Spring Elementary School in Roanoke
  • Jeff Hall, an art teacher at Henrico High School in Henrico County
  • Lawrence Kavanagh, a math and physics teachers at Louisa County High School in Louisa County
  • Judith Murray, a technology teacher at Middlesex Elementary School in Middlesex County
  • Sarah Sawyers, a chemistry teacher at Abingdon High School in Washington County
  • Jeremy States, a science, social studies and math teacher at Totaro Elementary School in Brunswick County.

"In this new economy, technology and education are inseparable," said Governor Warner. "These educators understand the value of technology as a tool to enhance teaching -- and they've found creative ways to do so."

"AOL is honored to be a part of an ongoing movement to help shape the way educators use technology in the classroom," said Mark Stevens, executive director and general manager of AOL@School. "Technology in education, specifically the use of the online medium and all it has to offer teachers and students, has always been a priority for us. We are fully committed to working with the Governor and the state of Virginia to continue to encourage the innovative use of technology in classrooms to help improve instruction and excite students about learning."

Entrants were asked to submit a technology portfolio of classroom work samples representing proficiencies, competencies, and talents in the use of educational technology and media. The portfolios were judged on technology skills, curriculum integration, research, communication, teaching/learning styles, motivation, evaluation, and peer coaching. A winner was selected from each of the DOE’s eight administrative regions. Each winner received an unrestricted award of $2,500 from AOL.

Governor Warner appointed a Blue Ribbon Panel to evaluate the technology portfolios that were submitted for the competition. Panel members were Dr. Danny Arkin, chief executive officer of the Virginia Society for Technology in Education; Cindy Charleton, educational specialist with the Community Ideas Stations (Commonwealth Public Broadcasting Corporation); Noreen Crowley, assistant secretary of education for the Commonwealth of Virginia; Linda Townsend, instructional technology design specialist for the National Institute for Technology Policy and Research; Melissa Warren, a previous award winner from Bristol City public schools; Dr. John Wenrich, associate director of the Institute for Connecting Science’s Research to the Classroom program at Virginia Tech; and Scott Willett, account executive for Dell Computers.