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NFA History Teacher Named Finalist for 2019 National History Teacher of the Year

Award Sponsored by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History Among the Most Prestigious for History Educators

New York City (August 13, 2019)--- Karen M. Cook '89, a history teacher at Norwich Free Academy has been named one of ten finalists for the 2019 National History Teacher of the Year Award. The award is presented annually by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, the nation’s leading organization dedicated to K-12 American history education.

A history teacher since 1998, Cook has been the Head of the Social Studies Department since 2007 and the Director of the Honors Program since 2015.  She received the prestigious Milken Educator Award in 2005 as an inspiring teacher of exceptional talent, accomplishment and contribution, and leadership and potential. Cook has served as an Executive Board Member, Vice President and Secretary for the Connecticut Council for the Social Studies. Her awards include the 2014 Excellence in Course Instruction Award for the UCONN Early College Experience and the 2005 National Council for the Social Studies Outstanding Secondary Teacher of the Year award

“The very best history teachers transform textbooks and primary sources into gateways to our country’s past, engaging students and prompting critical thinking about the events and facts that define our nation,” said James G. Basker, President of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. “We are thrilled to recognize these dedicated educators who have exceeded these standards and inspired classrooms across the country.”

Inaugurated in 2004, the History Teacher of the Year Award highlights the crucial importance of history education by honoring exceptional American history teachers from elementary school through high school. The award honors one K-12 teacher from each state, the District of Columbia, Department of Defense schools and US Territories. The National History Teacher of the Year will be selected from the pool of ten finalists on September 10, 2019.

The winner of the National History Teacher of the Year award receives a $10,000 prize at a ceremony in New York City, October 2, 2019. John Avlon, Senior Political Analyst and anchor at CNN will present this year’s award. Past presenters at the ceremony include the Honorable Sandra Day O’Connor, Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts, First Lady Laura Bush, former US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.