Wordelmann was nominated by her colleague, Jessica McCarthy. Wordelmann has created many programs at Jeffrey Clark School, including the “Poem in Your Pocket” program, which helps students with public speaking, reading, and writing poems.
“If you had a chance to be in Mrs. Wordelmann’s presence, you would be amazed by her energy and kind spirit which is contagious,” McCarthy said. “She makes you want to always do your best.”
Each school year, LifeChanger of the Year receives hundreds of nominations from all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Seventeen individual LifeChanger of the Year awards will be given during the 2017-2018 school year.
One Grand Prize Winner will receive $10,000 to be shared with their school/district; four Grand Prize Finalists will receive $5,000 to be shared with their school/district; 10 LifeChanger Award Winners will receive $3,000 to be shared with their school/district.
One Spirit Award is given to the nominee whose community demonstrates the most support for their nomination. The winner will receive $5,000 to be shared with their school/district.
A Spotlight Award is given to a nominee in a specific discipline each year. For 2017-2018, the award was given to Debra Santiago, who works as a secretary and bookkeeper in Orlando, FL. She received $5,000 to share with her school, Timber Lakes Elementary School.
Winners are announced via surprise award ceremonies held at their schools. The grand prize finalists will also be honored at a national awards ceremony in spring 2018 in Bermuda, where the Grand Prize Winner will be revealed.
Winners are chosen by a selection committee comprised of former winners and education professionals. Nominees must be K-12 teachers or school district employees.