Shorewood Excellence in Teaching Award – Collaborative Groups

The Shorewood Excellence in Teaching Award – Collaborative Groups recognizes the highest professional achievements in collaborative teaching. To nominate a teacher, please fill out the Shorewood Excellence in Teaching Award – Collaborative Groups nomination form.

NoteChange in the Excellence in Teaching Award for 2021-22 School Year


Certified teachers currently employed full time by the Shorewood School District, who are nominated by one or more students, parents, teachers, or other members of the Shorewood community. A teacher is eligible to win every 7 years, whether it is as an individual or part of a group.

Criteria for Selection

  • The collaboration is for delivery of curriculum, teaching methods or classroom aids which assist in:
    • Fostering academic and personal growth of all students
    • Upholding rigorous learning and behavior standards for all students
    • Promoting the development of leadership and ownership of learning by all students
    • Creating a positive learning environment
    • Engaging students through creative and innovative approaches to learning
  • The collaborative curriculum, teaching methods or classroom aids have been implemented.
  • The collaborative curriculum, teaching methods or classroom aids are not position dependent and may be implemented by any similar group of teachers.

Award & Timeline

$10,000 is awarded for a group of two teachers and $15,000 is awarded for a group of three or more teachers!

January 12, 2023 — Begin teacher nominations
February 24, 2023 — Nomination period ends
March 1, 2023 — Nominated teachers invited to apply
April 17, 2023 — Teacher applications due
First week of June — Winner(s) announced

2022-23 Honorees

Elizabeth Dean and Averie MankeLake Bluff Elementary School: 4th Grade Teacher
Samantha Pietenpol and Katy ThompsonLake Bluff Elementary School: 6th Grade Teacher

2020-21 Honorees

Jackie Butkovich and John StancoAtwater Elementary School: 5th Grade Humanities Group

2019-20 Honorees

Jessica AuBuchon and Jessica HauLake Bluff Elementary School: 5th Grade Teachers

2018-19 Honorees

Scott Brown, Jennifer Hoffman, and Amalie NorrisShorewood High School: School Counselors
Joleen Barry, Kamei Kim, Bridey Richards, Sara Starck, and Amy ThoresonAtwater Elementary School: K4 & K5 Teachers

2017-18 Honorees

Kristina Stridde and Krystle ThomasShorewood Intermediate School: Social Studies Teachers

2016-17 Honorees

Eric Gietzen, Mike Gregornik, and Eric MathewsShorewood High School: Watershed Wisdom Teachers

Selection Committee

Learn more about the Shorewood Excellence in Teaching Award – Collaborative Groups selection committee by clicking on the boxes below.

Nancy Athanasiou, Dean of the School of Education and Associate Professor, has been teaching at Alverno College since 2001. Prior to that, she served as an Instructional Technology Resource teacher/Instructional Specialist in the Germantown School District, and was a middle school teacher in the Milwaukee Public Schools.

Nancy has consulted with school districts and university faculty, locally and internationally in the areas of culture and climate, assessment design, feedback, self assessment, and defining and assessing institutional, program, and course outcomes, She serves as the curriculum coordinator for the Alverno College Research Center for Women and Girls and is co-director of the Leadership Advancing Character and Culture in Schools (LACCS) program. Nancy is co-chair of the Education Deans of Greater Milwaukee, serves on the board of the Greater Milwaukee Catholic Education Consortium, and consults with the Milwaukee Police Department’s STOP program.

Jack Linehan retired from the Shorewood School District in 2003 after 18 years in school leadership roles, 7 as high school principal, the last 11 as superintendent. He has since extended his career in education by contributing to a variety of school leadership and policy areas throughout the region.

He is currently on the faculty at Cardinal Stritch University as Director of the Superintendent Licensure Program and is Chair of the Doctoral Admission Committee. He has been a consultant to public and private schools throughout the region specializing in school leadership, policy, and operational effectiveness.

Latish Reed, a proud 1990 alumna of Shorewood High School, is currently serving as Milwaukee Public School’s first Equity Specialist. In this role, her job is to celebrate, advocate, and support differences, while stressing the common principles and goals of excellence and equity. She also has served as a college admissions counselor, MPS middle school teacher, and school administrator.

Latish received a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis from The University of Wisconsin-Madison, a Master’s degree in Middle School Teaching from Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in Sociology from Marquette University. Prior to returning to MPS as the Equity Specialist, she was an assistant professor of School Administration at both at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, respectively. Her research centered on the cultural and social factors that impact school organization and leadership.

Reed routinely participates in professional service on the national, school, and local community levels. In addition to the preparation of school leaders, she also consults with local schools, districts and organizations on leadership development and cultural competence attainment.

Jeff and his wife, Barbara Browning, have lived in Shorewood since 1975. All four of their children attended and graduated from the Shorewood Public Schools. Jeff received his B.A. from Cornell University and his J.D. from Marquette University Law School and has practiced law with Kasdorf, Lewis and Swielik, S.C. since 1975. His practice has included representing school districts throughout the state on a wide range of issues over the past twenty years.

In addition to practicing law, Jeff was a member of the Shorewood School Board from 1991-2001(serving as president for four years), was a member of the Shorewood Library Board from 2003-2012 (serving as president for six years), served on the Board of the Shorewood Foundation and has been chairman of the Shorewood Board of Appeals since 2003.

Kathy Smith is a long-time resident of Shorewood. She attended Shorewood Schools K-12 as did both of her children. She has served on various committees in Shorewood including Strategic Planning for Shorewood School, Shorewood Planning committee on Parks, and the Shorewood District Gifted and Talented committee. She served as President, Vice President, and committee member of the Lake Bluff PTA.