Outstanding Texas Educator

Each year TAS recognizes a mathematics or science teacher from Texas as the Outstanding Texas Educator.  The selection of this award is made by the TAS of Directors from candidates for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) and the award is presented in early March at our annual meeting.  

2020 Outstanding Texas Educator

Hannah Cotten
Hill Elementary in Austin, Texas

    Hannah Cotten graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2011 with High Honors, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Applied Learning and Development. She is currently a fifth grade Science Teacher at Hill Elementary in Austin, Texas and has taught for 8 years in Austin ISD. She currently also writes and develops STEM activities and lesson plans for JASON Learning and Feld Entertainment. Hannah has also started science after school clubs, such as the Water Bear Club and Animal Lovers Club. Additionally, she is a professional harpist and harp teacher in the Austin area. Hannah has received numerous awards and recognition. Most recently, in December of 2020, she received the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). This award is the highest honor bestowed by the United States government specifically for K-12 science and math teachers. The Awards were established by Congress in 1983. Only three science teachers are selected from each State, and she was selected for the state of Texas. Additionally, in June of 2018 she received a travel grant through Fund for Teachers, where she conducted research and brought science education and outreach to indigenous students in Las Lajas, Chirqui, Panama. In April of 2018, she also received the Texas Medical Association Educator Award and grant, providing science materials and equipment for her classroom and school. Lastly, additional awards and recognition include: CoSN Conference Awarded Educator and Guest Speaker, JASON Learning Teacher Argonaut, Austin ISD Teacher of the Year and Profiled Alumni for the University of Texas College of Education.


2021 - Hannah Cotten, Hill Elementary in Austin, Texas

2020 - Kay Fincher, Amarillo High School, Amarillo, Texas

2019 -Celene Rosen, Barksdale Elementary School, Plano, Texas

2018 - Megan Gabriel, MSMT Denton High School, Denton, Texas

2017 - Kirk Evans 5th grade teacher at Olson Elementary (Allen ISD) in Allen, TX

2016 - Carol Brown, Honors and AP Chemistry teacher at Saint Mary’s Hall in San Antonio, Texas

2015 - Celena Miller, Science and Technology Lab Instructor, Cesar Chavez Elementary

2014 - Mark Misage, Physics, Westlake High School

2013 - info to be added soon

2012 - info to be added soon

2011 - Martha Elizabeth Fiedler McLeod, Elementary, Biology, Westport