Cathy Conley, Knott County Central High (Knott County)
A 26-year-veteran teacher, Cathy Conley teaches English/Language Arts (E/LA). She received a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree and a rank I certification from Morehead State University. She has received several KVEC (Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative)-sponsored grants from 2017-2022. In 2017, she was accepted into the Freedom Writers Foundation in Long Beach, Calif. During the summers of 2019-2021, Ms. Conley worked with teachers, professors, counselors, and students from all 50 states and 20 different countries in the development of a global curriculum for grades K-12. Conley and one of her students were chosen to be a co-author in a book, Dear Freedom Writer, released on March 29, 2022.
Eddie Groves, Ohio County High
Edward “Eddie” Groves has taught at Ohio County High School for 14 years. He has a bachelor’s degree in integrated strategic communications from the University of Kentucky, a master’s of teaching in learning and behavioral disorders from the University of Campbellsville and a rank 1 in educational leadership from the University of the Cumberlands. He currently teaches multiple social studies classes, serving on the board of the Kentucky Council for Social Studies. He has been an assistant band director for 10 years. Groves lives in Beaver Dam, KY with his wife, Amanda, who also teaches at Ohio County High School. Together, they run the National Honor Society and the school’s academic team.
Tina Henry, Boyle County High
Tina Henry is a 29-year veteran teacher, having taught special education in Boyle County for the past 17 years. She holds a bachelor’s degree in special education from Western Carolina University. Henry emphasizes functional skills in the classroom, encouraging students to transfer them into their communities and homes. She regularly leads her students in volunteering in their communities.
Robin Kemp, Highlands High (Fort Thomas Independent)
From an early age, Robin Kemp dreamed of being a teacher. Now, she is a 26-year veteran teacher. She teaches physics and chemistry and serves as the academic team coach and junior class sponsor. Kemp holds a bachelor’s degree and masters’ degrees from Murray State University and a superintendent certification from Eastern Kentucky University. She has served as director of secondary education and assistant superintendent in Henderson County Schools, principal at Union County High School, an adjunct faculty member at Murray State University and with the highly skilled educator program at the Kentucky Department of Education.
Victoria Mohon, Christian County High
Victoria Mohon is a six-year teacher. She obtained her bachelor’s of science in agricultural education and her master’s of science in agriculture from Murray State University. She is currently pursuing her National Board Certification in the area of career and technical education. Mohon teaches courses across secondary grade levels. She also serves as an advisor to their FFA chapter and supervises the work-based learning program.
Lauren Niemann, Fern Creek High (Jefferson County)
Lauren Niemann began her professional career as a grassland community ecologist, but discovered her passion for science education while teaching undergraduate Zoology laboratory classes at the University of Oklahoma. For the last 12 years, she has taught middle and high school science classes. Niemann advocates for sustainability in the city of Louisville.
Amber L. Sergent, Woodford County High
Amber Sergent started teaching American and European history almost 20 years ago. She has worked as an adjunct history professor at University of Kentucky (UK) and Northern Kentucky University (NKU), and she has taught history at Gateway Community and Technical College. She has been teaching high school social studies for nine years, and currently serves as the summer school director and academic coach/advisor for the football team at her school. She holds a bachelor’s degree in art, history and government and a master’s degree in social studies education from Morehead State University. She holds a master’s degree in American history and a doctorate degree in American history from UK.
Steven Thomas, Green County Area Technology Center (Green County)
Steven Thomas never planned to become a teacher; instead, his professional career began as a welder. He holds a bachelor’s degree in vocational education from Western Kentucky University and is completing a master’s degree in education administration from Murray State University. He won the 2021 Golden Apple award in Green County, 2018 Teacher who Made a Difference award from the University of Kentucky and the 2017 Change award from Campbellsville Independent Schools. For the past 10 years, Thomas has taught welding at Green County Area Technology Center. During his time in the classroom, he has secured grants for career-and-technical education, growing his welding lab.