Each year we honor a number of professionals in economics and personal finance education.

The Albert Beekhuis Award

Douglas Young Awards Douglas Young
Director of the Center for Economic and Financial Education for the Council for Economic Education (CEE)

The Albert Beekhuis Award, made possible by a gift from the Albert Beekhuis Foundation to the Council for Economic Education, recognizes an affiliated Center for Economic Education for outstanding performance in working with teachers and exhibiting excellence in practice, delivery of high quality programs, and outreach to its community.

The National Center for Economic and Financial Education Center , led by Doug Young, is responsible for creating and running workshops for classroom and not for profit educational providers around economic and personal finance. This past year alone, the Center has trained over 2000 educators by providing more than 100 presentations in the Metropolitan area. During the past two years, the Center has played a vital role in helping to re-establish State Councils in New Jersey, Connecticut and New York.

The Center has also provided training and materials to after school not for profit programs such as the NYC YMCA, “Qualitas for Life” (a Hispanic Finance program), Children’s Aid Society, Equitable Communities, and CreditDo. All of these program use CEE’s “Financial Fitness for Life” materials. The Center is proud that CEE is honoring a math teacher, Natalie Patrizio-Tully from the University Neighborhood Middle School which has teamed with a not for profit (CreditDo) by providing both in class and after school personal finance education in one of the neediest neighborhoods in New York City.

Overall, we are working with over 60 organizations in the metropolitan area.

Douglas Young has been the Director of the National Center for Economic and Financial Education for the Council for Economic Education (CEE) located in New York City for the past three years. Prior to CCE, he was a classroom teacher of economics and personal finance for over 35 years at Croton-Harmon and Dobbs Ferry High Schools. He was recognized as the High School Teacher of the Year by both the Westchester and New York State Council for the Social Studies in 1994. During those teaching years, he enhanced his content and pedogogical knowledge by traveling to over 25 nations through study programs in Nairobi, Kenya; Salzburg, Austria; and the People’s Republic of China.

He had been a member of the New York Federal Reserve’s Education Board, a reviewer for the New York State Education Department on the existing economics curriculum, and was a reviewer for McDougal Littell on their published textbook “Economics: Concepts and Choices” written by John Morton, Mark Schug and Sally Meek. Between teaching and CEE he became a Certified Personal Finance Educator working at Community Capital New York, a nonprofit alternative lender, providing heling entrepreneurs obtain micro loans for their upstart business ventures and debt counselling for this in need.

Doug also worked for many years with the Coalition of Essential Schools out of Brown University on educational reform and has presented nationwide on many issues relating to education, and the social studies focusing more recently on economics and personal finance issues.

National Teacher Award Winners – The John Morton Excellence in the Teaching of Economics Awards

The Council for Economic Education (CEE) recognizes excellence in economic and financial education by honoring three national educators in the elementary, middle and high school levels. The awards honor inspirational teachers whose innovative teaching concepts improve and stimulate economic understanding.

Laura Rahman Awards

Elementary School Level

Laura Rehman
Canterbury School
North Carolina

Laura Rehman has been working in the teaching field since 1992 and at Canterbury School in Greensboro, North Carolina for sixteen years.

Mrs. Rehman has a BA in the teaching of languages from Universidad Veracruzana and a MA in the teaching of languages from the University of Southern Mississippi. Even though the teaching of Economics is not her core subject, Mrs. Rehman has developed a very successful and popular after school Microeconomics club, which is now in its sixth year. Due to her experience teaching young children about Microeconomics, Mrs. Rehman was invited to present a workshop for elementary and middle school teachers at the North Carolina Association of Independent Sschools (NCAIS) in 2010 and in 2011 she was awarded a scholarship to attend the Microfinance USA Conference in New York City.

Canterbury Microeconomics Club helps students learn financial and entrepreneurial skills. Children must invest and collaborate to create a business and a business strategy to make their money grow. Then the club members make loans to people and businesses from all over the world. At year’s end, each club member receives his/her original investment plus profits. Throughout the year, Mrs. Rehman enlists the help of community professionals to teach to club members about investments, planning for retirement and the importance of taxes.

Natalie Patrizio Tully Awards

Middle School Level

Natalie Patrizio-Tully
University Neighborhood Middle School
New York

Natalie Patrizio-Tully has been part of her school’s community for five years. She began as an America Counts tutor through the work study program at New York University. Upon graduating, Natalie was hired as the 7th and 8th grade mathematics teacher in her school. She has been a math teacher at University Neighborhood Middle School for three years. Natalie has her B.S. degree from New York University in Mathematics Education and is currently pursuing her graduate degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) at City College. Her current graduate studies in TESOL are to help aid in the teaching of the growing population of English language learners. Natalie’s classroom has a diverse student population and using real life situations and preparing students for their futures is key to keeping all engaged.

University Neighborhood is a small public middle school in Lower East Side, Manhattan. Natalie now teaches 6th, 7th, and 8th grade and incorporates economics into her lessons to better prepare students for their futures, while teaching to the Common Core State Standards. She takes pride in knowing her students can take knowledge learned from the classroom to better their lives. This past year Natalie’s students completed a budgeting project where they calculated costs of colleges while factoring in variables like financial aid, cost of living, and other expenses. Natalie and her school have partnered with an organization called Credit Do to help students study economics and financial fitness. Through this program students conduct a food drive to gather food for those in need in the Lower East Side. Natalie also has a passion for collaborating with colleagues to develop interdisciplinary lessons and opportunities.

Biba Kavass Awards

High School Level

Biba Kavass
Southwind High School

Biba S. Kavass teaches AP Macroeconomics and Economics at Southwind High School in Memphis, TN. A teacher for 10 years and former Financial Planner, she is passionate about involving her students in real-life hands-on applications of the study of economics. In 2012, Ms. Kavass was the recipient of a 3-year field-research based grant from the McCarthey Dressman Foundation to study global poverty and examine microfinance as a tool to eradicate said poverty. She and her students were tasked with creating a socially active website, writing a publishable book entitled “Microfinance in Action: A Guidebook for Teenagers,” and producing a video-documentary of their three years of travel from the Mississippi Delta/New Orleans, to the Lakota Indian Reservation in Pine Ridge, South Dakota, to their upcoming summer 2015 trip to Guatemala.

Ms. Kavass is also the sponsor of the Southwind KIVA Club, the first high school KIVA U microfinance club chartered in the state of Tennessee. To date, her students have made over 125 loans to 67 countries including the United States. They are working with an orphanage in Uganda on social entrepreneurship that is attempting to become self-sufficient by starting a poultry farm and with a tribal chief at the Lakota Reservation on providing solutions for eradicating the high rate of diabetes through various community initiatives. Members of the club are required to perform community service here in Memphis each month and they do it with such joy and generosity.

NAEE/CEE Awards – Bessie B. Moore Service Award

William Bosshardt Awards William Bosshardt
Florida Atlantic University

The Bessie B. Moore Service Award recognizes an individual whose outstanding and dedicated service has had a significant impact on the delivery and enhancement of economic education.

Bill Bosshardt’s dedication and contributions to economic education throughout his local and state region, throughout the country, and even internationally more than qualify him to win this award. Bill has been the director of the Florida Atlantic University Center for Economic Education since 1995, and since then he has consistently increased his service to our field. He came into the field with a strong commitment to research in economic education and has also become a leader in developing some of the Council’s prominent economic education curriculum projects including directing Focus: Globalization in 2006, Focus: Middle School World History in 2011, the National Standards for Financial Literacy in 2013, and the 3rd edition of Focus: High School Economics in 2014. Together, these projects represent some of the most important outputs from our network over the last 8 years and are sure to be popular hits for years to come. The High School Economics resource, in particular, is notable for its innovative take on active learning lessons by modernizing the delivery of lessons to meet students where they are as savvy users of learning technologies. Bill deserves much of the credit for ensuring that the resource, at its core, contains good lessons and that the technology is an enhancement, not an impediment, to solid education. Colleagues who have worked on these teams led by Bill comment on his expertise, knowledge, vision, guidance, and editorial skills as well as his sense of humor and patience when working with groups that often include, as one colleague stated, “stubborn people with diverse opinions and large egos in order to complete projects that will have long-term, significant impacts on the field of economic education.”

The network as well as all of the teachers and students that have been impacted by Bill’s service to the profession will be reaping the benefits of his tireless work for years to come. For being a dedicated and diligent servant of economic education, we honor Bill Bosshardt with the 2014 Bessie B. Moore Service Award.

John C. Schramm Leadership Award

Bonnie Meszaros Awards Bonnie Meszaros
University of Delaware

The John C. Schramm Leadership Award is given annually to someone who has exhibited great leadership in economic education. This year’s winner has made a career out of providing great leadership.

Bonnie Meszaros joined the Delaware Council for Economic Education in 1974. She has a distinguished career working with teachers and students at the state, national, and even international level. Her impact on economic education has been through program organization, curriculum development, and presentation. Bonnie has served as President of NAEE, chaired national search committees, curriculum writing teams, and NAEE committees. In fact, she served as chair of the writing committee for the first edition of the National Voluntary Standards in Economics. Her Council Director writes: “Bonnie’s impact on economic education is represented by her high character, commitment to high quality, competence in delivery, both written and oral, and her passion to enable students to have a better understanding of themselves and the economic world they face in the future.”

Bonnie’s leadership is well known. It is hard to imagine anyone in the economic education network who is more respected and receives more attention when speaking and acting. She has a gift for listening to others, synthesizing the thoughts, and then bringing something new to the task at hand. When she speaks, either as a formal leader or a participant, she is heard and then consistently leads the process in a very productive direction. As stated in her nominating letter, “when there is a sensitive or difficult initiative that must be successful, the first person that comes to anyone’s mind is Bonnie.” In recognition of her years of distinguished leadership to economic education, Bonnie Meszaros is the 2014 John C. Schramm Leadership Award Winner.

Patricia Elder International Award

Yoshi Nakamoto Awards Yoshi Nakamoto
Council for Economic Education – Japan

The Patricia Elder International Award is awarded for exemplary contributions to economic education internationally.

Yoshi Nakamoto has been an active member of the CEE/NAEE network for many years. He is currently the Managing Director of Council for Economic Education – Japan (CEE-Japan), an official licensee of CEE. CEE-Japan will soon be registered as the legal entity of General Incorporated Association certified by the government under Japanese law. Mr. Nakamoto is responsible for starting and building the CEE-Japan from the ground up. It is now the most prominent group in Japan providing economic, entrepreneurship and personal finance teacher training. To quote one of his nominator’s, “Yoshi believes that teaching economics strongly influences the daily activities of choice and decision-making. Both promise to positively impact the young people of Japan and, in turn, will shape their future. His guidance and enthusiasm are responsible for the remarkable progress of CEE-Japan.” His work has been recognized throughout Japan. He was officially appointment a certified lecturer in the teacher’s license-renewal program that reaches across several universities, and he is an official lecturer at the National Center for Teacher Development (NCTD). Finally, Mr. Nakamoto is an appointed member of the Japanese Minister of Education’s Central Education Council. Nakamoto’s innovations and commitment to economic education exemplifies the spirit of this award.

The Abbejean Kehler Technology Award

Phillip VanFossen Awards Phillip VanFossen
Purdue University

This award recognizes an individual instrumental in promoting the use of technology to improve the delivery of programs in economic education.

Phillip J. VanFossen is the Head of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education at Purdue University. He also serves as the James F. Ackerman Professor of Social Studies Education and as Director of the James F. Ackerman Center for Democratic Citizenship. He is also the Associate Director of the Purdue University Center for Economic Education (and holds a courtesy appointment in the Krannert School of Management at Purdue) where he teaches introductory economics courses for the Economics department.

A former middle and high school economics and social studies teacher, he has published more than 70 scholarly works including refereed journal articles in Theory and Research in Social Education, Social Education, The International Journal of Social Education, The International Journal of Educational Media, The Senior Economist, The Southern Social Studies Journal and Economics for Kids, and has three times served as guest editor for Social Studies and the Young Learner. He is the program author for the high school economics text Economics Alive! The Power to Choose (Teachers Curriculum Institute, 2009). In addition, he has co-authored seven volumes of classroom curriculum materials for economics and authored chapters in 3 handbooks.

In 2002, he was named as a University Faculty Scholar, and in 2009 he was chosen as a CIC Academic Leadership Program Fellow. Three times he has been named Kappa Delta Pi (Eta Chapter) Outstanding University Professor. In 2009, he was awarded Miami University’s “Profound Impact Award’ given to an alumni who is “making a difference in their communities and their profession.”

Rising Star Award

James Wilcox Awards James Wilcox
University of Southern Mississippi

The Rising Star Award recognizes a new member to our network who has “hit the ground running.”

James Wilcox is the Director of the Center for Economic and Entrepreneurship Education at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, MS. James has served in this capacity since 2011. In addition to the work he does in partnership with the MS Council on Economic Education, he also leads the Southern Entrepreneurship Program (SEP) which provides many opportunities for MS teachers and students to practice their entrepreneurship skills and run student owned businesses which positively affect the economy of MS. James was recently awarded the Donald W. Littrell New Professional Award by the Community Development Society. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (International Business) and a Master of Science in Economic Development, both from the University of Southern MS.

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