CONTACT:  Michele Clark
Communications Coordinator

Vol. 45, No. 32

April 20, 2011

State Board Honors Milken Award Winner

One of Missouri’s finest teachers was recognized today by the State Board of Education. Anika Williams, a recipient of the 2010 Milken Educator Award, was honored by the State Board during its monthly meeting in Jefferson City.

Anika Williams, 2010 Milken Award Winnter
The Rev. Stan Archie (right) presents Anika Williams with a resolution from the State Board of Education in recognition of her outstanding achievements.

Williams is a fifth-grade teacher at Conn-West Elementary School in Grandview. She has been teaching for 15 years and has spent 12 years at the Grandview C-4 School District. In October, Williams was surprised by the Milken Family Foundation at a schoolwide assembly. Her peers have praised her efforts in motivating students to succeed and her strong instructional skills.

Before an audience of about 75 observers, members of the State Board of Education commended Williams for being recognized as one of the many excellent teachers working in public schools in Missouri and throughout the nation.

“We express our deep appreciation for all the great work you have done in your classroom and in educating your students,” said the Rev. Stan Archie, vice president of the State Board. Superintendent Dr. Ralph Teran was among her supporters in the audience.

The prestigious Milken award is presented annually to one, sometimes two, unsuspecting educators in each state. The award comes with a $25,000 unrestricted cash prize and provides public recognition to teachers, principals and other specialists who are furthering excellence in education. It alternates each year between elementary and secondary educators.

Since it was founded in 1982, the California-based Milken foundation has given more than $62 million to educators across the nation. In 2010, 53 educators received the award; Williams was the only Missouri recipient.

Earlier this month, Williams attended the 2011 Milken Educator Forum in Santa Monica, Calif., where she was recognized during a special ceremony hailed as the “Oscars of Teaching” by Teacher Magazine. The educator forum joined award-winning teachers and principals with education leaders to share successful strategies for strengthening the nation’s K-12 school system.

Missouri has participated in the Milken Educator Awards program since 1996. A total of 42 Missouri educators in public schools have received the award since that time.