The Presidential Award is my Nobel Prize. It is my vindication or my justification for why I do what I do. It represents the extra hours in the lab, the hours before and after school with students, the time spent creating science experiences that my students will never forget. With this award I will no longer have to explain to my peers why I put so much effort into my classes, why I love my job, and why I call my students my kids. I can just point to the award on the wall.

Christopher Monsour Tiffin, OH | 7-12, Science, 2013

The official biography below was current at the time of the award.

Chris Monsour has taught all levels of biology, including AP Biology and Anatomy and Physiology, at Columbian High School for the past 16 years. He has served as academic dean for the Center for Talented Youth with Johns Hopkins University, and has worked with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.  Chris is the advisor of the student Biology Club. Chris has received the following awards: 2005 Outstanding Biology Teacher of the Year, 2007 Seneca County Chamber of Commerce Teacher of the Year, and a 2011 Martha Holden Jennings Scholar. He also authored and received several grants, including a recent grant for literacy in science based on the book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. Chris is a leader both locally and nationally. He serves on the board of trustees for the Earth Literacy Center, and is District III coordinator for the National Association of Biology Teachers, as well as a member of the executive board. Chris never stops learning. He has participated in three Earth Expedition trips to Trinidad, Namibia, and Argentina to study conservation issues. In 2007, he was selected for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Teacher at Sea program.  Chris has a B.S. in environmental biology from Heidelberg University and a M.S. in science education from Montana State University. He is certified to teach grades 7-12 in general science and biology.

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