Council for Economic Education Lifetime Achievement Award

In recognition of an individual vision and leadership in advancing K-12 education.

Carmen Farina

Chancellor Carmen Fariña

NYC Department of Education

Carmen Fariña is Chancellor of the New York City Department of Education, the largest school district in the United States, serving 1.1 million students in over 1,800 schools. Over the past 50 years, she has worked in virtually every capacity, from teacher and principal to district superintendent and deputy chancellor, distinguishing herself as an innovative educator committed to helping students, teachers, and principals excel. As Chancellor—a role she assumed in January 2014—her priorities include meeting the needs of the whole child; engaging parents and families; ensuring collaboration, trust, and accountability within the system; and supporting rigorous Common-Core based standards to raise student achievement.

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The William A. Forbes Public Awareness Award

The William A. Forbes Public Awareness Award is named for William Forbes, an entrepreneur who helped catapult Mr. Kazanjian’s small confectionery company – Peter Paul Almond Joy – into an industry leader. The Forbes Award is given for advancing public awareness of the importance of economic and financial education.

Seth Magaziner

Treasurer Seth Magaziner

Office of Treasurer, State of Rhode Island

The CEE acknowledges Treasurer Magaziner efforts in making financial literacy a larger agenda for the National Association State Treasurers. Treasurer Magaziner is also tremendous supporter of CEE’s advocacy efforts as well as those of our affiliate, the Rhode Island Council for Economic Education.

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Council for Economic Education State Council of the Year Award

In recognition of an affiliate significant accomplishments, demonstrated best practices and outstanding service in the state.


The Mississippi Council on Economic Education is headed up by Selena Swartzfager. The Mississippi Council is a leader in strategic partnerships, in collaboration with other state affiliates, in innovative programming, and providing professional development for teachers.

The Albert Beekhuis Award

The Albert Beekhuis Award was established by an endowment gift in 2002 from the Albert Beekhuis Foundation to the Council for Economic Education, to be given annually to an affiliated Center for Economic Education in the CEE Network for outstanding performance in working with teachers and exhibiting excellence in practice, delivery of high quality programs, and outreach to its community.


The University of Missouri, Kansas City Office of Financial Literacy, headed up by Latoya Goree, has covered every aspect of our work, and it has done so with creativity and a deep concern for the teachers and communities in Missouri.

John Morton Excellence in the Teaching of Economics Awards

The John Morton Excellence in the Teaching of Economics Awards promotes economic and financial education at the K-12 level by recognizing and honoring inspirational teachers whose innovative teaching concepts improve and stimulate economic understanding in and out of their classrooms.

Jacqueline Harris

Elementary School Level

Jacqueline Harris
Village Green Environmental Studies School
Point Saint Lucie, FL

Jacqueline G. Baptiste-Harris is an eleventh year First grade teacher in Port Saint Lucie, Florida. Jacqueline began her studies in Brooklyn, New York at Medgar Evers College where I earned an Associate of Arts in Teacher Education. Shortly after, she was accepted into the CUNY Baccalaureate Program and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Children’s Education and Cross Cultural Literature. Her desire to excel and achieve a higher education went further with her studies at Touro College’s Graduate School of Education and Psychology where she earned a Master of Science Degree in Childhood Education and Special Education (Grades 1 – 6). While pursuing my education she also worked full-time at Baruch College (CUNY) in the Psychology Department for 9 years. In 2011, she was introduced to the Florida Council on Economic Education’s Governors Awards Program for Teaching Excellence in Economics where she won second place becoming more enthusiastic about teaching economics to her students. Since then, every year she eagerly await that time of year and work very hard with her students on a project that focuses on entrepreneurship, economics 101 or personal finance literacy. The students really get excited and she enjoy the drive of presenting our hard work at the awards ceremony. She enjoy teaching primary kids and look forward to doing so for a long time.


Middle School Level

Ashley Biernacki
Greco Middle School
Temple Terrace, FL

Ashley Biernacki is a veteran teacher that launched her teaching career in 2001. She teaches in the School District of Hillsborough County, Florida with the following certifications: Biology 6-12, Business 6-12, Family & Consumer Science 6-12 and holds a Gifted Endorsement. Her insatiable desire to learn spurs her to continuously master new content areas. The University of Florida is where she earned her B.S. in Wildlife Ecology & Conservation and her Florida Master Naturalist Certification. The University of South Florida (USF) is where she earned her M.B.A. with an emphasis on Management, Finance, and Entrepreneurship.
Ashley integrates Economics into her Culinary Curriculum to promote self-sufficiency and life skill development as a core component of her Career and Technology program. She credits Dr. Puglisi, of the Gus A. Stavros Center for Free Enterprise and Economic Education, and her mother for inspiring her compete in the FCEE Governor’s Award program that is held annually. She earned a BB&T Fellowship held at the Stavros Center and has won several awards for economics including “Rookie of the Year” and the “Charles C. Harper Economic Educator of the Year” Award.
Ms. Biernacki is currently working on an Economic-themed project called the Sweet Shoppe. She is integrating her love of Florida History by highlighting the sugar cane industry, the history of candy making, the science of making candy, and the development of an actual Candy Shoppe where her students will make, package, advertise, and sell their products.
Her hobbies include visiting state parks, presidential libraries, traveling, cooking, hiking and wildlife photography.


High School Level

Michael Clark
Obra Tompkins High School
Katy, TX

Michael Clark is in his second year as an AP economics teacher at Obra Tompkins High School in the Katy ISD in Katy, Texas. In his first year at the school the AP Macro average test score increased from 2.83 to 4.09. Because the district does not offer AP Micro, he taught that subject outside of the school day. The students he taught obtained a 4.45 cumulative average on the AP Micro exam. Before coming to Tompkins, Mr. Clark taught at Bellaire High School. While at Bellaire, he won many teaching awards including; the HEB Excellence in Education Lifetime Achievement Award, the Texas Council for Economic Education Cooper Award for State Teacher of the Year, the Teacher of the Year Award from Houston ISD, the West Houston Chamber of Commerce Teacher of the Year and the Bellaire PTO Teacher of the Year. He has coached 2 teams to National Championships in the Council’s Economics Challenge, 3 national runners-up and 4 third-place finishers. He also had one National Champion and one national runner-up in the National Personal Finance Challenge. Michael is a graduate of the University of Iowa and lives with his loving and supportive wife, Lisa, in Katy, Texas.


Bessie B. Moore Award
The Bessie B. Moore Service Award is designed to recognize individuals whose outstanding and dedicated service has had a significant impact on the delivery and enhancement of economic education.


Lynn Farrell Stover

Associate Director of Programs
James Madison University

This creative mastermind and former librarian hailing from the Commonwealth of Virginia started her career as an elementary, middle level and gifted education teacher and librarian. After winning numerous awards as a teacher, she became a teacher educator at the James Madison University Center for Economic Education in 2005. Programs, curricula and EconEdLink lessons include financial literacy, entertainment and entrepreneurship but she is known nationally for her love of children’s literature and lessons authored by her that use the latest popular reads to teach economics. Teachers flock to her sessions as the annual conference for this reason. After her 2006 recognition as Rookie of the Year by the National Association of Economic Educators, Lynn Farrell Stover is now appropriately honored with the Bessie B. Moore Service Award.

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


Joanne Dempsey

Executive Director, Econ Illinois (retired)

Joanne Dempsey has been active in economic education since 1971 and international economic education since 2001. Most recently she served as Executive Director of Econ Illinois retiring in 2012. Currently she serves as International Programs Consultant at Northern Illinois University developing and implementing economics and entrepreneurship education programs working with YMCA of South Africa. Joanne worked closely with the Council for Economic Education’s International Education Exchange Program. Her exemplary work in the former Soviet Union, Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, Indonesia, and South Africa provide strong evidence of her long-term commitment to furthering international economic education. Her activities included organizing, administering, and planning study tours to Romania and South Africa, developing and piloting a multi-faceted International Classroom Exchange Program, and providing assistance to CEE’s international partners in developing their own economic education NGOs and program delivery systems. Joanne is a founding member and treasurer of the Global Economic Education Alliance, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to continuing the international economic education work started through CEE. Her work in bringing economic and financial literacy education to countries around the world reflects an extraordinary commitment and dedication to this mission.

Henry H. Villard Research Award
The Henry H. Villard Award recognizes an individual whose leadership has had an extraordinary, positive impact in economic education research.


Dr. Cynthia Harter, Director

Center Economic Education
Eastern Kentucky University

Cynthia Harter is Associate Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Economic Education at Eastern Kentucky University. She holds Masters and Ph.D. degrees in economics from Purdue University. Cynthia has investigated some of the most compelling research questions in the field of economic education and her research stream has led to a number of papers which are widely cited. One of Cynthia’s primary areas of research is the use of econometric techniques to study what works to help K-12 students learn economic and financial concepts. This line of research has proven to be an effective way to combine her work as an academic economist with her responsibilities as Center Director. Few researchers in economic education choose to study student outcomes below the high school level. Cynthia has made a major contribution to economic education by investigating the effectiveness of teaching methodologies and curriculum materials in improving students’ learning and attitudes about economics K-12. Her work has proven invaluable to economic education practitioners who use her research findings to improve what and how economics and personal finance are being taught in our schools.

The Abbejean Kehler Technology Award
This award recognizes an individual instrumental in promoting the use of technology to improve the delivery of programs in economic education.


Dr. Diego Mendez-Carbajo

Professor of Economics
Illinois Wesleyan University

Diego Mendez-Carbajo is a professor of economics at Illinois Wesleyan. He holds Masters and Ph.D. degrees in economics from Florida International University. His scholarly work focuses on the areas of Applied Economics, Teaching and Learning and Open Macroeconomics. Diego has actively promoted the use of technology to improve the quality and quantity of economic education. He believes that economic education is most effective when economic theory is attached to the real world using economic data. Most recently as a Visiting Scholar with the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Diego introduced several innovations to online economic education, conducted research on the effectiveness of online learning modules and online assessment strategies and broke new ground with his idea for FRED Interactives, self-paced online modules that make full use of the FRED database and web interface. FRED Interactives provide students with a brand new path for learning about economics while improving data literacy and critical thinking. His contributions to economic education through the use of technology have been relevant, meaningful, and innovative.

The John C. Schramm Leadership Award
The John C. Schramm Leadership Award is designed to recognize individuals who are, or have been, affiliated with the CEE/NAEE network, and whose leadership has had an extraordinary, positive impact at both the state and national levels.


Sue Owens

Former President of Economics Arkansas

Sue Owens served as president of Economics Arkansas from 2004-2017. In that role she demonstrated leadership at the state and national levels. She led an initiative to add a required high school economics course in Arkansas. The initiative was successful and the course was implemented in the 2010-2011 school year. Under her leadership Economics Arkansas was named the Non-Profit of the Year by the Arkansas Business Journal. In May 2016, Economics Arkansas established the Economics Arkansas Foundation. In June 2016, the Walton Foundation made a two million dollar lead gift to the Economics Arkansas Foundation. Sue recognized the importance of the National Association of Economic Education and the Council for Economic Education. She served as the President of NAEE and led strategic planning for the organization that resulted in the implementation of the NAEE curriculum awards program. In the past, many members had articulated the need for NAEE to be a 501(c)3, it was Sue who finally brought the plan to fruition. In addition, Sue served as a representative of NAEE on the Council for Economic Education Board of Directors. Sue demonstrated leadership throughout her tenure with economic education by giving of her time and talents as needed to assist colleagues and serve constituents across the country.

Rising Star Award
The Rising Star Award recognizes new members of our network who have “hit the ground running.”


Dr. Erin Yetter

Senior Economic Education Specialist
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Louisville Branch

Erin Yetter is the Senior Economic Education Specialist at the Louisville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. She holds a Masters degree in economics from the University of South Florida and a Ph.D. in economic education from the University of Delaware. Erin is an engaging and enthusiastic presenter who uses creative ideas to draw teachers into teaching economics and personal finance. Over her short time at the Fed, she has trained over 3000 teachers. Erin writes award-winning lessons and was the driving force behind the development of “Kiddynomics,” an award winning curriculum for preschool children. She has received two NAEE Gold Curriculum Awards and was honored by the Journal of Economics Teaching receiving its 2016 Best Paper Award for her paper, “Using the Berenstain Bears to Teach Economics in the Elementary Classroom.” She has served as President of the Kentucky JumpStart Coalition and currently serves as its Vice-President. In a short time, Erin has used her “toolbox” of competencies and talents to make an impressive impact advancing economic and personal finance education.

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