CHARLESTON – The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection’s (WVDEP) Rehabilitation Environmental Action Plan (REAP) is now accepting applications for the 2021 Make It Shine Environmental Teacher of the Year awards. The deadline to submit an application is Feb. 14.
Winners will be chosen on the elementary, middle and high school levels, with each winner receiving a $500 personal award, plus a $1,000 award to be used in promoting STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) programs at their school.
Educators eligible for nomination must teach either full-time or part-time, or volunteer in a classroom setting in a West Virginia public, private or charter school and have had their program established for at least one year. Teachers can be nominated by themselves, colleagues, principals, students or anyone familiar with their environmental program.
Awards will be presented to educators who have demonstrated exemplary environmental leadership through the creation of lesson plans, implementation of school programs, or participation in activities that promote environmental stewardship.
The 2020 Environmental Teachers of the Year were:
● Tonya Harper, Malden Elementary School in Kanawha County.
● Suha Beck, Westwood Middle School in Monongalia County.
● Gretchen Cremann, Moorefield High School in Hardy County.
To nominate yourself or a fellow educator for the 2021 awards, applications are available at
For more information, contact Annette Hoskins at Annette.L.Hoskins@wv.gov or call 1-800-322-5530.
REAP, whose new motto is “Keeping West Virginia Clean and Green,” was created in 2005 and strives to clean up West Virginia and rid the state of litter. The program empowers citizens to take ownership of their communities by providing technical, financial and resource assistance in cleanup and recycling efforts. Make It Shine is a program under REAP that focuses on volunteer cleanup efforts and rewards towns and cities for proactive approaches to keeping their communities clean.