The Presidential Award honors the professionalism and sacrifices of educators. This award honors the complexity of navigating the endless obstacles teachers face due to the daily and deep impact of education reform. To be an effective educator is to be superhuman. This award honors the sacrifices made by educators and their families. It validates the countless unpaid hours, energy, reflection, and commitment needed to engage in the relentless pursuit of achievement for all of our students.

Morgan Fierst Minneapolis, MN | 7-12, Mathematics, 2015

Morgan Fierst is in her 8th year at South High where she teaches Advanced Algebra to grades 9–12 and Advanced Placement Statistics to juniors and seniors. Morgan develops curious and engaged learners through work that asks students to notice and wonder. She is dedicated to building communities in which students understand how mathematics can help them investigate and engage in the social, economic, and political aspects of their world. Cultivating authentic relationships with every single student is her key strategy in developing mathematicians. Morgan is a leader in formulating a mathematics curriculum that connects her students to deep content in a culturally relevant context. Morgan is an advocate for social change and encourages students to use a critical lens at all times. Morgan has presented at many conferences, educational fairs, and community events. This includes the national Summit for Courageous Conversations about Race, and both the Minnesota and Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics annual conferences. Morgan is a mentor and alumna of the Minneapolis Teachers Institute. She guides, supports, and inspires fellows to think creatively as they navigate obstacles faced by educators. Morgan earned a B.A. in economics from the University of Chicago and is a candidate for a M.A.T. at Hamline University. She is certified in 5–12 mathematics.