Montgomery, Ala. – Today in Grand Bay, Alabama, the Milken Family Foundation presented the National Educator Award to Grand Bay Middle School Teacher Jennifer Olewnik. The announcement came during the 27th annual coast-to-coast tour to reward top educators. Olewnik never expected the award or the $25,000 check presented with the prestigious Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award, the “Education Oscar.”
The unsuspecting teacher from the Mobile County School System was presented with the 2013 Milken Educator Award at a surprise schoolwide assembly disguised as a school event. Presented by Dr. Jane Foley, Senior Vice President of the Milken Educator Awards, and Dr. Tommy Bice, State Superintendent of Education, the award honors the exceptional work of educators as a model for the state and nation.
The Milken Family Foundation’s 27th annual National Notifications Tour is honoring 40 outstanding educators and is the nation’s largest teacher recognition program. The entire school gathered to hear the extraordinary news that one of its own would receive an unrestricted $25,000 financial reward.
Bice praised Olewnik, hailing her as a wonderful example of what all teachers in Alabama can accomplish with drive and creativity.
“Jennifer Olewnik is a dedicated professional educator who offers to our students the best of what quality instruction can give. She inspires her young students to want to learn and is respected by her peers, who credit her with creating a true reading-friendly campus environment at Grand Bay Middle School. Today, we honor Ms. Olewnik – an exemplary Alabama educator – and Alabama’s 2013 Milken Educator.”