Colorado Center for Civic Learning and Engagement

Promoting Civic Education in Colorado's K-12 Schools.

Governor’s Colorado Civic Educator of the Year Award

A nomination link for this award will be shared in the Fall of 2023.

The Colorado Civic Educator of the Year award recognizes an exemplary classroom teacher who has demonstrated exceptional expertise in teaching about citizenship, the U.S. Constitution, Colorado Studies, Congress, and/or public policy at the state and local levels and is committed to preparing students to become informed and engaged citizens. This award is presented in honor of the extraordinary work of the Center for Education in Law and Democracy, which promoted and supported the development of responsible citizens committed to democratic principles and active participation in representative government in Colorado from 2002 – 2014.

How do I nominate a teacher?

Nominations for the award should come from an administrator, supervisor, principal, teacher, student, parent or other individual who can provide credible evidence of the nominee’s achievements. No self-nominations will be accepted.

To nominate a teacher, please complete and submit the following:

  • Nomination Form which can be submitted online. (Form will be available Aug 2023)
  • Letter of Nomination describing the nominee’s accomplishments and activities in the area of citizenship education and how they meet the eligibility criteria
  • Two Letters of Support from colleagues, supervisors, administrators, parents, and/or students
  • Nominee’s Vita or Professional Resume prepared by the nominee

Eligibility Criteria

Nominees should demonstrate the following:

  • Commitment: The educator gives of his/her time and energy beyond that required. The educator provides enriching activities to supplement classroom pursuits. The educator’s love for education is evident and provides motivation for students.
  • Competence: The educator has a deep knowledge of the subject and applies this knowledge in realistic and intriguing ways which stimulate student interest and increase students’ understanding of how law relates to other subjects, and of its significance in our society.
  • Concern: The educator cares about students’ academic and personal development. Students feel respected. The educator demonstrates a belief that all students can achieve by involving all students and holding high expectations for them.
  • Critical Thinking: The educator uses teaching techniques that foster the development of critical thinking. Encourages students to express their ideas and creates a classroom environment that is tolerant of diverse opinions. 
  • Democratic Principles: Fosters the development of democratic beliefs and values, and the skills needed for citizenship participation appropriate to students in the classroom, school, and community settings.
  • Leadership: The educator provides a personal and professional model for others to follow. Assists other teachers and shares ideas with them. Contributes positively to departmental, school, and community activities.
  • Student Voice: Actively encourages students to find and use their voice to effect change in their school and community.

How is the Colorado Civics Educator of the Year selected?
The recipient will be selected by an award committee. 

How is Colorado’s Civic Educator of the Year honored?

  • Recipient will receive $500 to be used for civics professional development. 
  • The Awardee will be recognized on the House or Senate floor at the Colorado State Capitol, which includes an authentic civic learning opportunity to bring his/her students, tour the Capitol, and meet with state legislators and legislative staff.

Past Recipients

Kelly Cvanciger, Bear Creek High School, 2020
Kelly Jones-Wagy, Overland High School, 2019
Stephanie Walsh, Rangeview High School, 2018
Victoria Bull, Northglenn High School, 2017
Monique Taylor, Aurora Central High School, 2016