in New Mexico
300 Don Gaspar
Santa Fe, NM 87501-2786
Fax: (505) 827-6520
October 17, 2002
Rio Rancho Principal, Fort Wingate Teacher
Honored with $25,000 Milken Educator Awards
(Santa Fe, NM)-Principal Suzanne Harper of Colinas Del Norte Elementary
School in Rio Rancho and Charlotte Begay, a family and child educator
at Wingate Elementary School, a Bureau of Indian Affairs school
in Fort Wingate, received prestigious Milken Family Foundation National
Educator Awards today at surprise notification ceremonies at their
schools. They will receive $25,000 unrestricted financial awards
for their recognition to use in any way they choose.
Presenting the Milken Educator Award was State Superintendent of
Public Instruction Michael J. Davis and Christopher Crain, senior
vice president, operations and general counsel for the Milken Family
Foundation. "Suzanne is committed to providing every student
with an education that is a step above. She has transformed her
school from a building to a vibrant learning environment,"
said State Superintendent Davis. "Charlotte takes an innovative
approach to learning. She meets with parents, grandparents, aunts
and others to involve them in students' lives and learning,"
In addition to the $25,000 financial awards, Harper and Begay will
receive all-expenses-paid trips to Los Angeles in June 2003 to participate
in the annual Milken Family Foundation National Education Conference.
They will become part of the Milken Educator Network, including
more than 1,800 top educators who have access to a variety of professional
resources to help cultivate and expand innovative programs in their
classrooms, schools and districts.
Recipients of the awards are recommended to the Milken Family Foundation
by an independent blue ribbon panel appointed by each state's department
of education. Predetermined criteria for the award include exceptional
educational talent as evidenced by outstanding instructional practices
in the classroom, school and profession, outstanding accomplishment,
strong long-range potential for professional and policy leadership
and an engaging and inspiring presence that motivates and impacts
students, colleagues and the community.
The Milken Family Foundation was established in 1982 to discover
and advance inventive and effective ways of helping people help
themselves and those around them lead productive and satisfying
lives. The Santa Monica, California-based Foundation advances this
mission primarily through its work in medical research and education.
Harper and Begay are among 100 K-12 educators from across the country
to be recognized during the 16th annual National Notifications