2021 TORCH Honorees
The Teachers of Ohio Representing Character and Heart (TORCH) recognition celebrates teachers who model strong character and a heart for their students, colleagues and communities. The TORCH recognition selection committee was greatly impressed by the stories of teachers from across Ohio who are dedicated to educational equity and make strong personal commitments to their students. From these nominations, the five teachers listed below were recognized during spring 2021.
Withrow University High School
Mr. Nathaniel Snow, a math teacher at Withrow University High School in Cincinnati Public Schools lives up to the mantra “Be the Change, You Want to See.” He is an exceptional leader and role model with a long history of philanthropy and service in the community through his nonprofit foundation “Snow Angels” to provide food, shelter, and resources to the less fortunate and homeless community.
In his school building and district, Mr. Snow tutors ACT / SAT content and spends countless hours coaching and mentoring students. An advocate for recruiting and retaining more black males into the field of education, he serves as a professional mentor to students at Miami University and leads the Omega Psi Phi fraternity’s scholarship for high school seniors.
Mr. Snow is currently pursuing his doctorate degree to expand his sphere of influence to promote more equitable practices in mathematics instruction.
Circleville High School
Ms. Danielle Stultz is a 9th grade high school teacher of English Language Arts and Honors English classes at Circleville High School in Circleville City Schools. She is dedicated to building relationships with students as they transition from middle school to high school. Because of her rapport with students, they feel a gravitational pull to her as not only a teacher, coach, and advisor, but as a human being who cares about their successes and problems. In the classroom, Ms. Stultz takes an interactive approach to literacy development empowering students to use multimedia tools for visual and written storytelling, including video production, screenwriting, and virtual reality.
After the school bell rings, she continues to be a catalyst for student academic advancement by way of developing their soft skills and authentic literacy skills as the district In the Know lead advisor, Drone Team advisor, freshman class advisor, and lead for our new e-Sports initiative. Through these programs and initiatives, Ms. Stultz embeds technological innovation, problem-based learning (PBL), and 21st Century skills into her lessons fostering engagement and growth.
Modeling excellence among her peers, she leads the annual Total Participation Technique (TPT) professional development seminars, has added English Language Arts certification to her license to better aid the students in 9th grade, and serves on the school’s climate committee implementing Focus3 curriculum to staff and students.
In the community, she expands her classroom with real-world connections serving on our Alumni Association Board, the Circleville Pumpkin Show announcer’s committee, and as president of the Circleville Education Association.
Riverside High School
Ms. Jaime McIntyre is a teacher of English Language Arts and Leadership / Entrepreneurship / Service courses at Riverside High School in the Riverside Local School District. She is the epitome of an educator that leads by example and constantly finds ways to make our school community a better place to both learn and grow. Her contributions to the community, in and out of the classroom, are numerous. Her enthusiasm for community service is infectious and inspirational to students working with her.
With her support, students in her Leadership/Service and Entrepreneurship class created the Riverside Cares Closet as an outreach effort providing school supplies, basic hygiene products, and snacks to any student that needs them. She also led this class to organize and operate an annual event called Halls of Holly where elementary school students have an opportunity to attend a Holiday event where they find decorated rooms full of music, games, and many other amazing activities.
Ms. McIntyre radiates positivity and greets all students daily with the words "Good morning Sunshine". She was instrumental in helping to reimagine events we held for our graduating seniors. COVID did not slow her down!
Clinton Elementary School
Ms. Stephanie Greenen, a second-grade teacher at Clinton Elementary School in Columbus City Schools has shown unflappable perseverance during a challenging year. She has embraced remote learning and made “ZOOM School” look easy with her amazing engagement and patience. Ms. Greenen cares about the whole child, exemplifies by having a daily “check-in” meeting with her students to find out how they are feeling and if they are ready to learn. She teaches them strategies to help them move from a “blue zone” (feeling down and discouraged) to a “green zone” (feeling motivated and ready for the day).
She patiently guides her students through virtual classes while navigating her own Hard of Hearing challenges by diligently finding each child’s face on screen to lip read while they talk ensuring she can understand them and give them individual attention. Using read aloud stories about being Deaf and Hard of Hearing with her class she brings awareness, understanding and empathy to her young students.
As a National Board Certified Teacher, Ms. Greenen models excellence and leadership in her school district as a presenter on Social and Emotional Learning practices. At the building level, she works with her peers on the second-grade curriculum development and is always available to assist other teachers with remote learning best practices.
Cloverleaf High School
Mr. Martin Ryan is a chemistry teacher at Cloverleaf High School in Cloverleaf Local Schools. He has been teaching at the same school for over 33 years but never ceases to grow and learn professionally. In addition to teaching chemistry and physical science, Mr. Ryan has been a coach for the Varsity Boys basketball and currently serves as Department Chair of the Science Department.
He is a solid role model for the many young people as a coach who understands that demonstrating character is more important than what’s on the scoreboard, and a teacher leader who inspires his peers to continually grow and perfect their craft.
To be a student in Mr. Ryan’s class is to be dazzled by his sense of humor and love of science. Any observer would immediately notice that he really is having a great time when he is engaging with students. It is difficult to be in his classroom and not get taken in by the joy of learning and curiosity that he radiates.
As Chair of the Science Department, Mr. Ryan led a team of science teachers to excellence. Solid curriculum and assessment alignment, ever-improving hands-on activities to engage young learners, the continuous perfecting of lessons as well as a positive attitude of continual improvement has led his department to be highly respected among administrators and peers alike.
Ask students who among the staff deeply cares about their success and learning. Who will schedule a virtual meeting with them on a Sunday afternoon to study Chemistry? Who would stop to help them if they were stuck on the side of the road? Undoubtedly the person of character and inspiration is the answer, Mr. Ryan.
Last Modified: 5/21/2021 2:57:20 PM