Roseville and Mounds View district teachers among 167 MN Teacher of the Year candidates

Education Minnesota, the state’s teacher’s union, has announced this year’s slate of candidates for the 54th Minnesota Teacher of the Year award.

A Jan. 18 press release from the union said this year’s 167 candidates is the third-most ever, and the most since 1981.

Candidates for the award include pre-k through 12th-grade teachers and Adult Basic Education teachers, from both private and public schools.

The crop of 167 candidates will be whittled down to a group of semifinalists by a 25-person panel in the coming weeks, and then down to a group of finalists. The award will be presented in a May 6 ceremony.

Without further ado, the Mounds View Public School District candidates are Kari Eloranta, Jake Hairrell, Claudia Powers and Bill Sucha.

Out of the Roseville Area School District the candidates are Patrick Moriarty and Greg Ueland.

Gregory Truso, who teaches in the St. Anthony-New Brighton School Districts is also a candidate.

In a historical head-to-head Teacher of the Year tally, Mounds View and Roseville are evenly matched — the St. Anthony-New Brighton District has yet to have a teacher win.

According to Education Minnesota’s website, teacher Theodore Molitor won for Roseville in 1969, Denneth Dvergsten did it in 1975, Judy McCleery won in 1986, and Roseville’s most recent Minnesota Teacher of the Year was Maureen Sanger, named in 1988.

A Mounds View teacher has won the award three times. Robert Heyer did it in 1974 — he went on to be named National Teacher of the Year in ‘75, a feat unmatched by a Roseville educator — Ray Olson won in 1977 and Cecilia Critchley was the state winner in 1980.


Mike Munzenrider

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