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Teacher Union Day 2021 Honorees

Orange hexagon with outline of a trophy

Teacher Union Day commemorates the 1960 strike that put the newly-formed UFT on the path to being the activist organization that it is today. On this day, we honor the past leaders who inspire us and celebrate our present leaders who continue in their footsteps by keeping the union strong through their activism and dedication.

2021 Honorees

Charles Cogen Award

For outstanding service to the union rendered by a veteran leader

  • Ellie Engler

Jules Kolodny Award

Given to an individual who has shown outstanding leadership and commitment to the trade union movement with years of leadership yet to be fulfilled.

  • Tina Puccio

David Wittes Award

Given to a person or a group that has shown outstanding courage, dedication and commitment to the ideals of the UFT

  • Jackie Bennett

Audrey Chasen Award 

Given in memory of Audrey Chasen, a former teacher mentor in the New York City public schools

  • Jamel Holmes

Sidney Harris Award 

Given to an outstanding leader in the area of special education

  • Kerry Yefet

Backer-Scheintaub Award 

Given to honor the lives of Gerald Backer and Mildred Scheintaub by encouraging potential new teacher union leaders

  • The entire UFT Health & Safety Department

Marsh/Raimo Award 

Given in recognition of political action

  • Karen Davis
  • Zelideth Diaz
  • Gregory Monte
  • Raphael G. Tomkin
  • Anne Wine
  • Retiree Political Activists

Albert Lee Smallheiser Award 

This award recognizes the work of educators who strive to improve the working conditions of their colleagues

  • Patricia Crispino
  • Leo Gordon
  • Matt Kirwan
  • Mitchell Klages-Bombich
  • Seung Lee
  • Alain Metellus
  • Susan Perez
  • Rana Quamina
  • Daniel Rodriguez
  • Joseph Surpris

Ely Trachtenberg Award

Awarded to outstanding chapter leaders

Elementary Schools

School Chapter leader
PS 14X Fred Cassara
PS 35X Margaret Joyce
PS 48X Jeanette Cano-Lawson
PS 109X Jennifer Rivas
PS 114X Erika Comrie-Krupa
PS 157X Jessica McDonnell
PS 310X Elizette Santana
PS/MS 315X Nicole Scaccio
PS 001K Frances Moeller
PS 006K Aileen Edwards
PS 013K Nellie Rosario
PS 026K Patricia Brown
PS 039K Suzann Bassil
PS 095K Georgia Nikoloudakis
PS 135K Eileen Cohen
PS 178K Yvette Collins
PS 192K Jennifer Colonna
PS 196K Anthony Zalak
PS 238K Brooke Miller
PS 256K Bridgette Williams
PS 274K Helene Loomis
PS 308K Talib Siddiqi
PS 375K Trisha Ortega
PS 399K Andrea Rawle
PS 599K Saisha Braithwaite
PS 676K Glenn Collins
PS 71K Keith Miller
PS 018Q Mark Amft
PS 019Q Iris Diaz
PS 027Q@439 Jacquelyn Felten
PS 080Q Yevette Frazier Greene
PS 117Q Maureen McTigue
PS 193Q Joanne Genova
PS 194Q John Fazakas
PS 197Q Evelyn Carlin
PS 144Q Lori Diamond
PS 203Q John Del Vecchio
PS 280Q Monika Sendra
PS 295Q Colleen Chiauzzi
30th Avenue School Q300 Alison Lisberger
PS 003M Michael DeShields
PS 092M Denise Bullock
PS 102M Lamar Devine
PS 103M Karin DeJesus
PS 110M Ellen Gentilviso
PS 149M Sojourner Truth Gay Zacerous
PS 178M Dalia Gonzalez
PS 194M Stephanie Perez
PS 198M Michelle Bellizzi
PS 029R Brian Stephens
PS 038R Christina Kuzar

Junior High/Middle Schools

School Chapter leader
MS 217X Barkee Wilkes
MS 224X Alexandre Perez
JHS/MS 287X Pellumb Cela
IS 187K Jeffrey Feil
IS 201K Robert Swigert
IS 383K Joyce Baldino
IS 464K Mounia Asiedu
MS 890K James Enny
MS 907K Kenneth Price
MS 137Q Eric Schmitt
IS 052M Zachariah Plotkin
IS 289M Jennifer Rogers
IS 24R Christopher Rogers
XP12 - PreK Ctr @626X Marc Cohen

High Schools

School Chapter leader
Eximius College Preparatory Academy (X) Shawn Tedrow
Health Opportunities High School (X) Melody Niere
Young Women Leadership School of the Bronx (X) Amy Nelson
Urban Assembly Institute of Math and Science for Young Women (X) Damon Noland
Brooklyn High School of the Arts (K) Timothy Evans
Edward R. Murrow High School (K) Charlene Tuff
El Puente Academy High School (K) Joseph Matunis
James Madison High School (K) Maria Bucca
Kingsborough Early College Secondary School (K) Michael Kullman
Academy of Finance and Enterprise High School (Q) Jessica Herrera
Civic Leadership Academy High School (Q) Janice LaVaute
Energy Tech High School (Q) Donna Joyce
Martin Van Buren High School (Q) Camille Toma
Academy Software Engineering HS (M) John Bernor
New York Harbor High School (M) Michael Vlahovic
Susan Wagner High School (SI) Lillian Palladino

District 75

School Chapter leader
PS 396K Kim Schuler
PS 811Q @ Marathon School Sarina Raffa
PS 0993Q @ PS 208Q Lisa Viscovi

District 79

School Chapter leader
Brooklyn High School for Leadership and Community Service K616 Marcella Judkins
Harlem Renaissance Joy Yearwood
New Directions Secondary Michael Grant

Functional Chapters

Chapter Chapter leader
School Counselors Chapter Rosemarie Thompson
Administrative Education Officers and Analysts Chapter Denise Williams Crawford