The teachers went through a rigorous application screening, followed by a panel classroom observation and interview. In mid-August, the three finalists will each give a three- to five-minute speech at the Mt. Diablo Unified School District's new-teacher orientation, where they will be judged by another panel of educators and business and public-sector representatives.
The winner will be announced in front of a crowd of more than 500 attendees at Contra Costa County's Teacher of the Year Dinner Celebration on Sept. 25 at the Concord Hilton Hotel. The County Teacher of the Year will then compete in the State Teacher of the Year Program.
The other two finalists are Andreas Kaiser, a teacher at Pittsburg High in the Pittsburg Unified School District; and Mark Morello, who teaches at Bristow Middle School in the Brentwood Union School District.