EUREKA – Andrea Butler-Crosby, a fourth and fifth grade teacher at Orleans Elementary, has been named the 2022 Humboldt County Teacher of the Year.
“Being selected as the Humboldt County Teacher of the year is such an honor,” Butler Crosby said. “This award is more than I ever expected to receive in recognition for my work. I am honored and humbled by my selection, as I am fortunate to work with so many talented and resilient educators who dedicate their lives to inspiring our youth.”
Butler-Crosby was one of seven educators honored with the Excellence in Teaching Award in May. The Excellence in Teaching Awards recognize classroom teachers from Transitional Kindergarten through 12th grade who have been identified as exemplary by their coworkers, students or school communities.
View a short profile video of Butler-Crosby from the Excellence in Teaching Awards at vimeo.com/706325393.
Serving students in the Klamath-Trinity Joint Unified School District, in Karuk Aboriginal Territory, Butler-Crosby has worked to connect her students with the local history of the area, educating both tribal and non-tribal youth in culturally relevant ways.
“As a professional educator, I endeavor to work in partnership with my local community to prepare my students to participate locally, as well as globally, as citizens of a small, interconnected planet,” she said. “Over the 22 years I have spent in the Orleans community, I have been fortunate to cultivate strong relationships and partnerships with our local tribal departments and elders, who have made time to visit and share with my classes, taking an active role in preparing our youth for a bright future.”
And working in such close partnership with community members has made a profound impression on her as well.
“Being able to work with our local community, I have learned as much as I have taught, if not more,” she said. “Collaboratively, we focus on developing a strong and positive sense of identity in our youth, welcoming and integrating traditional ecological knowledge into many areas of study.”
One of the community members who she has worked with, Karuk Tribe Education Committee member Lisa Morehead Hillman, had this to say about Butler-Crosby: “Andrea demonstrated interest in and experience working with underrepresented and marginalized youth. She is dedicated to and has a deep connection to our Native American and non-Native people. Ms. Butler is one of our greatest role models and community treasures.”
As the Humboldt County Teacher of the Year, Butler-Crosby will have the opportunity to be considered for the California State Teacher of the Year, traditionally announced in October.
To learn more about HCOE’s Excellence in Teaching Awards, visit hcoe.org/awards/ or contact Stacy Young, M.A., Visual & Performing Arts Program Manager at (707) 445-7077.