Excellence in Education Awards

The Excellence in Education Awards program began in 1996. It recognizes students and educators within the County of Santa Clara that embody The SVO, formerly the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce’s spirit of acting as a convenercollaborator and champion within their community. Along with public recognition, the SJSV Chamber also offers recipients educational grants. Over the course of the program’s history, these grants have totaled more than $80,000. These awards were given to the recipients at the annual Legends & Leaders event.

An invited keynote speaker attends every year and award recipients have the opportunity to meet and greet them. Past speakers include: Colin Powell, Christopher Reeves, Lady Margaret Thatcher, Walter Cronkite, Barbara Bush, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Magic Johnson and Joe Montana.

View additional photos of the 2015 event and 2014 event on the SJSV Chamber's Flicker page and watch the introductory videos for our 2015 recipients on the SJSV Chamber's YouTube channel.

2016's event welcomed Pulitzer Prize winner and Associate Editor of the Washington Post Bob Woodward.

Past recipients of the Excellence in Education, Community Leadership and the Peter S. Carter Legacy awards:

2016

Student of the Year

Alejandra Bonilla, San José High School

Teacher of the Year

Michele Goetowski, Village School

Principal of the Year

Matthew Hewitson, Lincoln High School

Community Leadership

Steve Berkenhagen

2012

Student of the Year

Simisola Tani-Olugbemi, Willow Glen High School

Teacher of the Year

Laura Butera, Julia Baldwin Elementary School

Principal of the Year

Jason Sorich, Horace Cureton Elementary School

Community Leadership

Vikki Bowes-Mok and Alyssa Byrkit

2015

Student of the Year

Alejandra Fraume Valencia, Gunderson HS

Teacher of the Year

Christian Rubalcaba, Selma Olinder Elementary

Principal of the Year

Maria Evans, Washington Elementary

Community Leadership

Carl & Marianne Salas

2011


Student of the Year

Austin McLaggan, Pioneer High School

Teacher of the Year

Kim Munoz, Blackford Elementary School

Principal of the Year

Diane Burbank, Prospect High School

Community Leadership

Leah Toeniskoetter

2014

Student of the Year

Benito Aaron Ordaz, William C. Overfelt High School

Teacher of the Year

Charles Fowler, Yerba Buena High School

Principal of the Year

Aaron Brengard, Katherine R. Smith Elementary School

Community Leadership

Chuck Reed, Mayor, City of San Jose

Peter S. Carter Legacy Award

Suzanne & Jim Salata

2013

Student of the Year

Hannah Pham, Abraham Lincoln High School

Teacher of the Year

Brian Conroy, Moreland Middle School

Principal of the Year

Sandra Garcia, Adelante Dual Language Academy

Community Leadership

Rich Holden

Peter S. Carter Legacy Award

Bob Kieve, KLIV & KRTY