News & Media

10 Outstanding Wyoming Teachers Honored With Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards

May 1, 2013 at 4:15 PM EDT

CHEYENNE, Wyo., May 1, 2013 -- Ten Wyoming teachers were honored today as recipients of the prestigious statewide Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award at a ceremony at the Capitol.

Arch Coal President and Chief Executive Officer John W. Eaves, accompanied by Gov. Matt Mead, Wyoming First Lady Carol Mead and Wyoming Education Association (WEA) Treasurer Jon VanOverbeke, presented awards to:

Charles Franke Wheatland Middle School Wheatland
Christina Gerrits Sage Valley Junior High School Gillette
Carla A. Itzen Kelly Walsh High School Casper
Pamela Kraft Encampment K-12 School Encampment
Liesl I. Peterson Wheatland High School Wheatland
Dory Pfister Lusk Elementary School Lusk
Michael Riley Cody High School Cody
Paul G. Street Laramie High School Laramie
Lesley Urasky Rawlins High School Rawlins
Jamie Walker University of Wyoming Lab School Laramie

Each teacher received a personal cash award of $3,500 from the Arch Coal Foundation, as well as a distinctive trophy and plaque. The Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards program, now completing its 13th year in Wyoming, is the state's longest-running privately sponsored teacher recognition program.

"Wyoming's classroom teachers are shaping the next generation of leaders in our communities and beyond," said Eaves. "Arch Coal is proud to have taken a leadership role in Wyoming to ensure that the state's star teachers are recognized for their contributions."

"Teachers do more than instruct -- they inspire," Mead said. "They change lives, influence communities and cultivate a lifelong love for learning. Carol and I thank Arch Coal for honoring excellence in education and for allowing us to join in spotlighting exceptional teachers. We congratulate this year's honorees on their selection and salute them for their contribution to Wyoming's future."

"On behalf of the Wyoming Education Association, we want to congratulate this year's recipients," said VanOverbeke. "Our members respect your dedication to excellence in education and the ingenuity, inspiration and world-class education you provide to your students. The WEA is proud to have been involved with the Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards recognition program since its inception 13 years ago."

Nominations for the awards are made by the public, and selection is made by a blue-ribbon panel of the teachers' peers, all past recipients of the Teacher Achievement Award.

The Wyoming Department of Education, the Wyoming Education Association, the Wyoming library community, Taco John's and Loaf 'N Jug stores are longstanding supporters of the program. The Arch Coal Foundation also supports teacher-recognition and grants programs in West Virginia, Utah and Colorado, as well as a number of other education-related causes.

Information about individual recipients is posted at

St. Louis-based Arch Coal, Inc. (NYSE:ACI) is one of the world's top coal producers for the global steel and power generation industries, serving customers in 25 countries on five continents. Its network of mining complexes is the most diversified in the United States, spanning every major coal basin in the nation. Arch Coal's Wyoming operations -- Thunder Basin Coal Company's Black Thunder and Coal Creek mines and Arch of Wyoming -- have a combined workforce of about 1,750. Arch Coal and the Arch Coal Foundation have a long history of supporting educational and community causes in Wyoming. For more information, visit