Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion Awards

CEE Seeks Applications from NY Metro-Area Educators for the 2015 Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Teaching Champion Awards

2014 VA Awards 300x195 Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion AwardsThe Council for Economic Education recognizes excellence in economic education by honoring three outstanding educators from the New York Metropolitan area with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Teaching Champion Award.

This award promotes economic education at the K-12 level by recognizing and honoring teachers who effectively deliver this important content in and out of their classrooms and achieve results. We seek applicants who instill in students an understanding of economics and the tools to make informed and responsible decisions that they will carry with them as they grow into successful and productive adults.


  • A cash award of $5,000.
  • A cash award for their school of $2,500 to support economic education.
  • Recognition at CEE’s Visional Awards on October 29, 2015.
  • A scholarship to attend the 54th Annual Financial Literacy and Economic Education Conference in St. Petersburg, FL, October 7-10, 2015.
  • The opportunity to share best practices with their teaching colleagues by co-facilitating a professional development workshop for the National Center for Economic and Financial Education in New York, at the annual conference or via webinar.



The entries must be submitted electronically by 11:59pm ET on June 15, 2015.

Materials to submit:

• Answers to all online questions
• Two lessons
• Three letters of recommendation
• Resume


  • Applicants must teach in one of the twelve New York State counties (New York, Kings, Bronx, Richmond, Queens, Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Putnam, Rockland, Orange and Dutchess), eight New Jersey counties (Bergen, Passaic, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Union, Morris, Monmouth), or the two Connecticut counties (Fairfield and New Haven).
  • This award is open to teachers of all subjects, not just teachers of economics. Applicants must demonstrate how they integrate economics into their teaching.
  • Teachers will not have had to participate in previous CEE training to be eligible.
  • K-12 certified teachers from public, private or parochial schools may enter, and you must have taught full time in the classroom during the 2014-2015 school year. Substitute and part-time teachers are not eligible.
  • Applicants must plan to teach full time during the 2015-2016 school year.

For more information, including selection criteria and entry requirements, and to enter, please complete the online form.

2014 Awardees

Sloan Darren Gurney Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion Awards Darren Gurney
12th Grade Economics Teacher of Economics and
AP Macroeconomics
New Rochelle High School, New Rochelle, NY
Years of teaching experience: 18
Gurney in the classroom Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion Awards

Darren Gurney began teaching social studies at New Rochelle High School in 1996. He has been teaching AP Macroeconomics since 2007 and a one semester Economics course since 2000. Gurney founded the NRHS Economics Team which has finished in the top five annually in CEE’s New York State Economics Challenge for the past eight years (2nd place finish in 2014).

Mr. Gurney attended Washington University in St. Louis where he played baseball and majored in history before earning a Masters in Social Studies Education at Teachers College of Columbia University. NASDAQ selected Gurney for national semi-finalist in 2004 as one of the “Top 12 economics educators in the USA”. CNBC and The New York Times have visited his classroom to run feature stories on his students and their investment endeavors. Jim Cramer invited ten of Gurney’s students and their families to be part of his “Mad Money Father’s Day Show” in 2007.

In 2011, Coaches Choice published Covering All the Bases, a 298 page instructional baseball book, which Gurney penned about proper baseball fundamentals and mechanics. Gurney has coached high school and NCAA baseball for the past 22 years and is also the founder/director of Rising Star Baseball Camp, the largest baseball camp in Westchester County.

“By providing a comprehensive economic education to my students, I aspire to empower them to make effective choices as adults when spending money, using credit cards, managing investments, setting up retirement accounts, pinpointing competitive mortgage rates, negotiating with car dealers, understanding how monetary and fiscal policy affect their daily lives, and a multitude of other financial decisions. My passion for inspiring teenagers to become financially literate helps foster a more prosperous economic future for our nation and its citizenry.”

Sloan Kathleen OHagan Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion Awards Kathleen O’Hagan
Fourth Grade Teacher of Language Arts, Math, Social Studies and Science
P.S. 97/The Highlawn School, Brooklyn, NY
Years of teaching experience: 11
OHagan in the classroom Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion Awards

Kate O’Hagan has been a public school teacher for eleven years. She developed a passion for teaching economics after attending CEE’s professional development workshops. Kate has implemented a classroom mini-economy in her fourth grade classroom, where kids pay rent, apply for jobs, receive bonuses, and purchase insurance. Kate is constantly seeking ways to infuse economics lessons into the curriculum. She has organized debates on economic issues, used plays to teach economics, and had the students manufacture real products for their classroom store using a 3-D printer (procured through a grant).

Kate is a member of her school’s professional development committee and was a member of the DOE’s Literacy Common Core Task Design Team in 2012–2013. She has been an active grant writer and received numerous awards and fellowships; including being a writing fellow in the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullen Center in 2009, a MetLife Fellow in 2007–2008, and the recipient of both the UFT’s Trachtenberg and Chapter Building Awards in 2013–2014.

“Students are born into their parents’ economic reality and unfortunately, for far too many city children this often means not seeing their parents because they work multiple jobs, sometimes coming to school hungry, being under-dressed for the weather, or arriving to school without basic school supplies. Economic education and financial literacy instruction empowers students to envision and prepare for a better economic future for themselves and hopefully, also teaches them the importance of being philanthropic.”

Sloan Amanda Tombari Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion Awards Amanda Tombari
12th Grade Teacher of Economics (Intensive, Regents,
Honors, AP)
Clarkstown South High School, West Nyack, NY
Years of Teaching Experience: 8
Tombari in the classroom Alfred P. Sloan Teaching Champion Awards

With a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and Secondary Education for Social Studies from the State University of New York at Cortland, Amanda Tombari started teaching at Clarkstown South High School. After seeing the importance and need for strong Economics curriculum in schools, she began and completed her Master’s Degree in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology from the University at Albany. She has attended a number of workshops offered by the Council for Economic Education, College Board, and Syracuse University. The knowledge she has gained from these workshops and their presenters, as well as her studies at Cortland and Albany, has helped her teach Economics students of varying abilities and instruct other teachers on effective practices through the Cortland Center for Economic Education and the New York State Council for the Social Studies’ annual conferences. In addition to her work as an Economics teacher, she serves as a teacher mentor to economically disadvantaged youth who plan to pursue a degree in teaching.

“In order to prepare our youth for the future, we must teach students the skills they need to be active, engaged citizens who not only make rational decisions, but also challenge the ideas of others. Economics education allows this to happen. Students are given a place to learn the decision making skills that complete their toolkit and aid them in their understanding of the social sciences. These skills are essential, no matter what the students’ ability levels or future plans, and will be used undoubtedly for the duration of their lives.”

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