Council for Economic Education Lifetime Achievement Award:

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

carmen icon Awards

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.

During her first full year as Chancellor, Fariña oversaw the historic expansion of pre-kindergarten to more than 53,000 four-year-olds; expanded the Community School model to provide more wrap-around services to students and families; created a stand-alone, cabinet-level department to support English Language Learners; and increased funding for arts education and after-school programs for middle school students. She also developed new leadership models, transforming the role of superintendents to better support principals; launched the Framework for Great Schools, a holistic research-based approach to school improvement; and created Learning Partners and Showcase Schools, demonstration sites of excellence that allow schools and educators to work collaboratively to strengthen their practices.

A Brooklyn native, Fariña began her career as a classroom teacher specializing in social studies. She spent 22 years at Brooklyn elementary school P.S. 29, where she used reading and writing to boost students’ literacy skills and connect class work to real-world events, key components of what would later become Making Connections, an award-winning program that the then Board of Education replicated citywide.

Fariña went on to become one of New York City’s most successful principal and superintendent. Under her leadership, P.S. 6 in Manhattan, a good school, rose from 76th on the citywide reading test to among the top three, becoming one of the City’s best public elementary schools. She achieved this remarkable turnaround by visiting each classroom daily, encouraging teachers to share best practices, and enhancing staff training. During this time, she was also an adjunct professor at Bank Street College: P.S. 6 served as a model site for prospective principals, hosting more than 500 visitors a year.

In 2001, Fariña was elected Community Superintendent of Brooklyn’s District 15, and earned accolades for transforming a deeply divided school community by working collegially with administrators, parents, and teachers. She later served as Superintendent of Region 8.

From 2004 to 2006, Fariña served as Deputy Chancellor for Teaching and Learning at the Department of Education, where she invested $40 million to expand programs for middle school students, including Saturday classes, organizational and study skills workshops, and parent counseling. She also improved services for students with disabilities.

Prior to becoming Chancellor, Fariña worked as a consultant in the City’s schools, particularly assisting middle school principals.

A daughter of Spanish immigrants, Fariña was the first person in her family to graduate from college. She holds a Bachelor of Science from New York University and three master’s degrees from Brooklyn College (Bilingual Education), Fordham University (Gifted/Arts Education), and Pace University (Administration and Supervision). Fariña is co-author, with Laura Kotch, of A School Leader’s Guide to Excellence: Collaborating Our Way to Better Schools (Heinemann, 2008). She is the recipient of many prestigious awards, including the Sloan Public Service Award (1989), presented annually to exemplary civil servants.

The mother of two adult daughters and proud grandmother of three young boys, she still lives in Brooklyn with her husband of nearly 50 years.

John Morton Excellence in the Teaching of Economics Awards

Gina Awards

Elementary School Level

Gina Boyd Mayflower Mill Elementary School Lafayette, IN

Gina Boyd is a native of Tennessee but now lives in Lafayette, Indiana. She attended Lispcomb University in Nashville, Tennessee, where she met her husband, Josh, and earned a B.S. in Elementary Education. She has taught every grade from 1st to 8th except for 6th, but fifteen of Gina’s twenty-four years of teaching have been in a self-contained High Ability 4th and 5th grade classroom at a Title I school. Through her leadership, the school uses the classroom mini-economy for economic instruction and behavior management. Her students learn about entrepreneurship every year through class businesses that create and produce products to earn a profit. As the Elementary School Teacher Advocate for the Purdue Center for Economic Education, Gina has also presented the mini-economy and classroom business enterprise concepts to other schools looking to improve their economic instruction. Gina has an endorsement in Gifted and Talented Education from Purdue University and is a National Board Certified Teacher. She was the recipient of the regional Olin W. Davis Award for Exemplary Teaching of Economics in 2009 and again in 2013 and was named a 2011 Golden Apple Teacher by the Lafayette Chamber of Commerce. Gina has won numerous grants from the Indiana Department of Education, the Public Schools Foundation of Tippecanoe County, the Indiana Council for Economic Education, and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. With her husband and their two children, Kinley (15) and Knox (10), Gina has worked on eleven summer mission projects to Japan, Thailand, Fiji, and Malaysia. Follow her on Twitter @4th5thGT and check out her blog at

PDM Awards

Middle School Level

Patricia Dennis Sonora Middle School Springdale, AR

Patricia is a graduate of the University of Arkansas- Fayetteville (BA in Communication) and Arkansas State University (MS in Special Education- Gifted, Talented and Creative). After trying her hand at various jobs she finally realized that she should be doing what everyone told her she should do; TEACH. For the last 7 years she has been teaching middle school students reading, math, science, and gifted and talented education. She is a 2015 recipient of the Bessie B. Moore Award for excellence in teaching economics and the 2016 Curriculum Award Winner for secondary education from AGATE. She is currently pursuing her specialist degree in curriculum leadership at Henderson State University. She currently lives in Fayetteville, AR with her husband and son.

jacob Awards

High School Level

Jacob Clifford San Pasqual High School Escondido, CA

Jacob Clifford has been called “the world’s most amazing and gifted economics teacher” by his mother and he prides himself in making the dismal science just a little bit less dismal. He teaches at San Pasqual High School in Escondido, California and he’s tall, like really tall. Also, he kind of looks like Mark Cuban, but not really.

Jacob has created a surprisingly popular YouTube channel called ACDCLeadership that helps students everywhere learn economics, and, with a Masters degree in economic education from the University of Delaware, you would think that he would be better at writing a professional bio and avoid long, drawn-out, run-on sentences, and, Jacob will be delighted if the Council for Economic Education actually prints this; seriously, it will help people see that economists aren’t boring.

Jacob is an AP exam grader and works with the College Board to train AP Economics teachers. He also runs professional development workshops that focus on student engagement. Jacob was trying to think of a joke that could fit right here but he couldn’t think of anything. Thanks Obama! Jacob loves teaching economics and he’s astonished that the Council for Economic Education is giving him this prestigious award, even though he nominated himself.

The only thing Jacob loves more than drawing graphs and teaching economics is his beautiful, and undeservingly patient, wife Paula and his five kids: Lindsey, David, James, Avery, and, what was the new one’s name? Umm. Jessie. That’s it, Jessie.


Bessie B. Moore Service Award

Marsha Masters 2 Awards Marsha Masters, Associate Director Economics Arkansas

The Bessie B. Moore Service Award recognizes an individual whose outstanding and dedicated service has had a significant impact on the delivery and enhancement of economic education.

Marsha Masters joined the program staff at Economics Arkansas in 2009. Prior to that, she taught in public school systems in Arkansas for almost 25 years. She holds a Masters’ Degree in Education and is a nationally board certified educator. Marsha was selected as an Arkansas Polly M. Jackson Master Education Teacher in 2000. Marsha has developed and conducted numerous sessions and professional development offerings in her state and nationally. She has received multiple state and national economic education awards for her work, and is honored to be an author for CEE publications and EconEdLink. In 2013, Marsha was appointed to the executive committee of the National Association of Economic Educators and currently serves on the educational resources committee.As Associate Director, Marsha leads the development of new initiatives to improve the relevance of economic education programs.

John C. Schramm Leadership Award

MaryAnnHewitt 1 Awards Mary Ann Hewitt, Executive Director Maryland Council on Economic Education

The John C. Schramm Leadership Award is given annually to someone who has exhibited great leadership in economic education. This Year’s winner has made a career of providing leadership in our network.

Mary Ann Hewitt is Executive Director of the Maryland Council on Economic Education (MCEE), has worked in the field of education for over 40 years as high school classroom teacher, department head, adult educator, and conducted professional development. Mary Ann began her career as a high school teacher. In 1985 she joined MCEE as Program Consultant delivering Economics workshops and programs to Maryland teachers. In 2003 she became the Associate Director of MCEE and the Director of Education. Two years later she became the Executive Director. Mary Ann has served as a member of Governor’s Task Force on Financial Literacy, Writing team for the Maryland State Curriculum for Social Studies, Financial Literacy Education Advisory Council for the Maryland State Department of Education, and Member of the Board of Directors for Council for Economic Education. In 2016 Mary Ann was recognized as a Daily Record Most Admired CEO.

Patricia K. Elder International Award

Claudia Sícoli Economía y Negocios Internacionales Awards Dr. Claudia Sicoli, Director Center for Economic Education Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas, Lima, Peru

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

Claudia Sícoli is the Academic Director of Economics and International Business at the School of Economics and Professor of Economics, Research and Environmental Economics at the Peruvian Applied Sciences University (UPC). Sícoli received the UPC Excellence in Teaching Award 2012 in January, 2013. Claudia received a PhD in International Business Administration and Management from the Cataluña Polytechnic University (Spain), a MA in Teaching for Higher Education from the Andres Bello University (Chile), a MA in Services Economy from Universidad Autonoma de Madrid (Spain) and a BA in Economics from the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo (Argentina). Currently, Claudia is the Coordinator of the UPC Center for Economic Education. For the past seven years, she has offered several workshops in economics, using the methodology of the CEE, for more than 200 Peruvian high school teachers. She has participated in two Study Tours to the United States, during 2011 and 2014, and has co-conducted two Study Tours to Cusco-Lima in 2015 and 2016 (exchange program for teachers and professors). She was Trainer of trainers for the Council for Economic Education (ToT 2008-09 Alumni).

Henry H. Villard Research Award

Woodfinal 1 Awards Dr. William Wood, Director Center for Economic Education James Madison University

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

William Wood is Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Economic Education at James Madison University. Wood received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Virginia in 1980 and has held faculty positions at Vanderbilt University, the University of Virginia and Bridgewater College. Wood’s publications in economic education span more than 30 years, beginning with “The Educational Potential of News Coverage of Economics” in The Journal of Economic Education in 1985. Wood has since published scholarly work with 22 different coauthors, four of whom were JMU undergraduates in honors or independent study programs. His work includes the textbook Economic Episodes in American History (with Mark C. Schug) and the Best Paper winner in 2001 (with David Kreutzer) in the Journal of Private Enterprise. His work has appeared in outlets as diverse as The Journal of Risk and Insurance, Public Choice, and The Wall Street Journal. Wood is also a past recipient of the Alpha Kappa Psi-Clifford D. Spangler award for research in risk and insurance and was named a Madison Scholar at JMU for career research achievement. He has authored five books, more than 40 scholarly articles, and national economic education materials for school and adult audiences.

The Abbejean Kehler Technology Award

Carlos J. Asarta Awards Dr. Carlos Asarta, Director Center for Economic Education and Entrepreneurship University of Delaware

This award recognizes an individual instrumental in promoting the use of technology to improve the delivery of programs in economic education.

Carlos J. Asarta is the Director of the Center for Economic Education and Entrepreneurship and Associate Professor in the Department of Economics at the University of Delaware. He holds Masters and Ph.D. degrees in economics from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. His scholarly work focuses on the areas of economic education, technology in the classroom, financial literacy, and assessment. His research has been published in academic journals such as the Internet and Higher Education, Decision Sciences Journal of Innovative Education, and Journal of Economic Education. Carlos is the author of Principles of Economics (McGraw-Hill), a “digital-first” product offering the same core content found in mainstream economics textbooks but in a way that breaks free from the constraints of a traditional textbook’s structure and format.

Rising Star Award

kim holder Awards Kim Holder, Director Center for Economic Education University of West Georgia


17a smaller Awards Jennifer Davidson, President Nebraska Council on Economic Education University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The Rising Star Award recognizes a new member of our network who has “hit the ground running.”

Kim Holder

Kim Holder is the Director of the University of West Georgia’s (UWG) Center for Economic Education and Lecturer of Economics in the Richards College of Business (RCOB). She’s an alumna of UWG and Georgia State University’s Andrew Young School of Policy Studies. Kim’s passion for her students is notable both inside and outside of the classroom. Her work has been recognized by the UWG Student Government Association’s Faculty Member of the Year Award (2014), the UWG Alumni Association’s J. Owen Moore Faculty Award (2016), and the UWG Athletic Foundation’s Faculty Member of the Year Westpy Award (2016) created in recognition of her service. She is also the recipient of the RCOB Excellence in Teaching (2014), Service (2015), and Research (2016) awards, along with multiple faculty-sponsored undergraduate research awards for mentoring students. Holder’s research focuses on creatively teaching with media and social media to break down barriers to economics education. She created the National Rockonomix Contest (Journal of Economic Education, along with other innovative techniques (“Putting Yourself in the Picture with an ECONSelfie”, International Review of Economic Education and “Art of Econ: Incorporating the Arts through Active Learning Assignments in Principles Courses”, Journal of Economics and Finance Education) in order to engage today’s students. Kim also serves the network as a founding advisory board member of the Journal of Economics Teaching, co-chairs the Technology Committee for the National Association of Economics Educators, and was recently appointed to the board of the Association of Private Enterprise Education.

Jennifer Davidson

A dynamic advocate for economic education, Jennifer Davidson is President of the Nebraska Council on Economic Education and an Assistant Professor of Practice in Economics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Jennifer develops economic and financial literacy programming and curriculum, conducts community outreach, fosters strategic partnerships and is an ambassador for economic education within Nebraska and nationwide. With both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in economics and economic education Jennifer is a dynamic lecturer and presenter. She is recognized for her activity based teaching style, cutting-edge online mentoring and warm personality. Ms. Davidson is an in demand speaker who works with businesses, churches, volunteer groups, schools and associations to present economic concepts in new ways that are accessible to both professional and general audiences.

The David V. Martin Lifetime Achievement Award

David Martin Awards David Martin, Executive Director
Georgia Council on Economic Education

In recognition of your vision and leadership of our national network resulting in the advancement of economic education.

As Executive Director of the Georgia Council on Economic Education since 1982, Dr. David Martin’s work is focused on helping teachers teach economics in the public and independent schools of Georgia. He coordinates the efforts of twelve college and university-based Centers for Economic Education across the state. In turn, the Council and Centers work with educators in public school systems and independent schools throughout the state. The Council also collaborates with virtually every other organization in Georgia with economics- related programming. The Council is funded by the private sector, and governed by a Board made up of top leaders from business, education, government, and agriculture.

Prior to joining the staff of the Council, he was an instructor in the United States Army; taught social studies at Sprayberry High School in Cobb County; and was an adjunct professor at Agnes Scott College.

During the course of his career, Dr. Martin has received a number of awards, including the John C. Schramm Leadership Award presented by the National Association of Economic Educators and the National Council on Economic Education for his national efforts on behalf of economic education. In Georgia, he was selected as STAR Teacher and Teacher of the Year and was inducted into the Teacher Hall of Fame at Sprayberry High School, and he was recognized as the Cobb County Baseball Coach of the Year and the Dugout Club’s Metro Atlanta All-Star Baseball Coach. He has received the Charles Berryman Service Award from the Georgia Council for the Social Studies. He was presented with the inaugural Lee Burge Servant Leadership Award from the Georgia Consortium for Personal Financial Literacy. He and the Council are the recipients of the prestigious Leavey Award for Excellence in Private Enterprise Education from the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, and the Program of Excellence Award from the Georgia Council for the Social Studies. He has been listed in “Who’s Who in Education in Georgia” by the Atlanta Business Chronicle, and serves on the Board of the Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education. Dr. Martin has provided leadership for a number of national task forces and committees, and served as the liaison between the National Association and National Council during the 1989-1991 and 2002-2004 periods. He co-authored “A Guidebook for Directors of the Affiliated State Councils on Economic Education” in 1989. He currently holds leadership roles in Communities in Schools of Georgia, the Georgia Association of Economics and Finance, and the Georgia Consortium for Personal Financial Literacy. He has also served his local schools as Chairman of the Cobb County Facilities & Technology Review Committee, overseeing the expenditure of more than $600 million of SPLOST (Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax) funding.

Dr. Martin received a Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Economics from Georgia State University in 1981. He also holds a Bachelor’s Degree with majors in Economics, History and Political Science from Westmar College and a Master’s Degree in American Studies from Purdue University.

Dr. Martin is married to Lynn Dee Martin, Organist at the Smyrna First United Methodist Church, where he taught the Biblical Connections Sunday School Class for twenty-five years, served as Chairman of the Glorifying God Capital Campaign and the Capturing the Vision Campaign, and serves as a Stephen Ministry Leader. He has four children and four grandchildren.

More from the CEE