The Presidential Award is the ultimate recognition of my teaching career. I have spent over 20 years teaching children while using science as a catalyst for learning. This award acknowledges the positive impact I have made. It also recognizes the myriad of teachers, mentors, and colleagues who have imparted their scientific knowledge and passion within me. These partners in my education have cultivated a contagious love of science and have helped me become the teacher I am today.

Dawn Wilcox Anchorage, AK | K-6, Science, 2018

The official biography below was current at the time of the award.

Dawn Wilcox has been a second-grade teacher at Campbell STEM Elementary for three years where she teaches all subjects. In her 20-year career, Dawn has taught in the Highly Gifted Program, Title 1, and as a science instructional specialist in the STEM Department for the Anchorage School District. Working with her colleagues, Dawn was able to fulfill her dream of creating a school promoting science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Campbell STEM is now the first STEM elementary school in Anchorage. Dawn's passion is engaging students in hands-on, project-based learning. With a colleague, she secured an Anchorage Park Foundation grant to revitalize the neighborhood Wolverine Park. Working with landscaping professionals, students, and an afterschool STEM club, the park now has outdoor learning labs, paths, signs, and landscaping. She is currently working with students and a colleague on a polyculture school garden with chickens and an apple orchard. At her school, she is involved in science day, STEM nights, the science fair, and Iditarod Teacher in Every Classroom (iTREC). Dawn earned a B.A. from the University of Alaska, Anchorage in elementary education and a M.A. in educational psychology from the University of Connecticut. She is certified to teach kindergarten through eighth grade education.