LifeChangers in the News

Elias Brantley - USA Today

When 2018-19 LifeChanger Award winner Elias Brantley started coaching basketball, he noticed his team lacked nice uniforms. He took it upon himself to design and sell apparel with the team logo, using the profits to support his athletes. Find out more in his profile from USA Today.


LifeChanger of the Year - Brian Copes.jpg

Brian Copes - Edutopia

Our 2017-18 Grand Prize Winner, Brian Copes, felt like a failure when he was in school. Today, he takes delight in unleashing his students’ creativity and problem-solving skills to engineer inexpensive solutions for real-world challenges. Find out more in his profile from Edutopia!



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Check out last month's newsletter below, featuring awesome LifeChangers and resources to take your instruction to the next level.


Welcome Back!

Who's ready for a new school year? We hope you're all feeling refreshed from this summer, whether you spent some time at the beach, took a fun class, or did some volunteer work in your community. When you're not busy purchasing last minute-school supplies, take a minute to catch up with us in our first newsletter of the school year.

In this issue:

  • Learn from last year's Grand Prize Finalists about how it feels to be a LifeChanger
  • Meet four incredible 2019-20 LifeChangers
  • Find tips for showing LifeChanger spirit
  • Show students how to support one another through the music of Muddy Williams
(pictured above: 2018-19 Grand Prize Winner Keishia Thorpe giving her acceptance speech)
Appreciation is the theme of everything we do, from sharing our LifeChangers' stories in the media to surprising our award winners. This culminates each Spring, when we take our top five Grand Prize Finalists to a five star resort for an all-expenses paid, tropical vacation. These top LifeChangers not only get opportunities to network and go on fun excursions, but they're celebrated for the impact they've made on students' lives.

We were fortunate to have a few of last year's Grand Prize Finalists share their memories from their trip. Click the button below to check out what they had to say.
Read Our Finalists' Testimonials
P.S - we'll be having our 2019-20 Awards Ceremony next April in Palm Beach, FL! If you know an educator who deserves this incredible opportunity, don't forget to nominate them here.

Check Out These LifeChangers

Brianna Nargiso
Washington, DC

By day, Ms. Nargiso is a paraprofessional and fierce advocate for underserved students. By night, she's a dance instructor teaching hip-hop classes to students in an after-school program she developed. Not bad for 20 years old!


Rosemary Simmons
Edison, NJ

Although Ms. Simmons' job title is school nurse, she does so much more! She sponsors a multitude of clubs at her school, including a chapter of Girl Up, a club that empowers female students to develop leadership skills and start movements for social change. READ MORE

Robin Wood
Renton, WA

Like music? Then you'll love Ms. Wood. She directs a yearly music festival in her district, where more than 550 students convene for a live performance. She has also provided her students with incredible opportunities, including a trip to Carnegie Hall in New York City! READ MORE

William Tome
Boynton Beach, FL

Mr. Tome is revered in his community - and not only because he's a phenomenal school resource officer. He started a basketball league for at-risk students that doubles as a violence prevention initiative. He steers students away from risky behavior and keeps them safe! READ MORE
As the school year begins, we want to know: how are you celebrating the LifeChangers in your community? Rally enough support, and they could have a chance to receive the LifeChanger Spirit Award! This is a $5,000 award given to the LifeChanger whose community demonstrates the most support for their nomination. 
Showing spirit can be as simple as leaving a comment on your LifeChanger's profile, like the comment shown above for Nicolas Williams! If you feel like flexing your creative muscles, go above and beyond by making t-shirts or having a pep rally in your LifeChanger's honor. However you decide to celebrate, make sure to share it with us on social media using the hashtag #LCOY.

Still need ideas? Click the button below to get started.
Support Your LifeChanger!
We've all been "the new kid" at least once, and you might even have one in your classroom this year! Being in a new school can be a challenging experience, but our friends at The Rock and Roll Forever Foundation (RRFF) can help through the best way they know how: music. RRFF developed the TeachRock curriculum to help teachers engage students across all subjects through popular music.
They have a wonderful series of lessons themed around blues musician Muddy Waters, whose move to Chicago influenced his music. You can use these lessons to not only help students strengthen their reading and writing skills, but help them develop empathy and positive relationships with one another.
Download the Muddy Waters Lessons
When you were a student, what was your favorite subject? Please select a response below, and we'll share the results in next month's newsletter.
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*|SURVEY: Art/Music|*
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