Tuesday, May 29, 2018

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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Mayor Speaks to Local Lions

Louisville Mayor Will Hill recently spoke to the Louisville Lions' Club. Hill noted several projects ongoing across the community as well his recent trip to Washington, D.C. where he met with our Congressman and Senators on several local issues. Hill also attended a panel discussion at the White House with other mayors across the country and federal department officials. Mayor Hill had the opportunity meet and converse with Vice President Mike Pence at that time.

After Lengthy Delays, Final Approval to Remove Old Courthouse Annex Building Obtained

Some long-awaited changes to downtown Louisville may finally begin to take shape as Winston County received approval to remove the old Annex Building behind the existing Courthouse. The building constructed in the late 1940’s has until recently been used as offices and a courtroom by the County.

The building’s basement has been unusable for a number of years and termite damage has weakened the structure as well. The County has been working on a project to build a new three-story structure on the site to serve a number of purposes, including offices for the Sheriff and Emergency Management Departments, board rooms and administrative offices, since funding became available after the April 2014 tornado.

The project has been delayed pending approval to demolish the existing structure. The major issue has been obtaining approval from the Mississippi Department of Archives and History dependent upon its status as a historical structure. This approval was needed to obtain the necessary funding from FEMA and MEMA. After lengthy delays, the County received that approval within the last two weeks.

According to Winston County Supervisors’ Board President Luke Parkes, the County is ready to take action and hopes to take bids as early as the next board meeting in March with demolition beginning this Spring and further action on new construction to follow quickly.

Rendering of a proposed structure to replace the existing Courthouse Annex

Monday, February 19, 2018

The Pact Book Club Gathered: A Black History Story

Image may contain: 9 people, including Jamere Eichelberger, people smiling, people standing, tree and outdoor
L to R: Royce Davis (held by father), LeVante Davis, Jr., Clifton Eichelberger, Jr., Jamere Eichelberger, Isaac  Edwards,
Cory Hardy, Elmetra Patterson, facilitator and Rashaad Edwards. (not photographed: Nicholas Shields, Mikel Hannah,
Tyrone Stallings, Brandi  and Michelle Hopkins)

The Pact Book Club was founded in 2006 by this writer and Brandi Hopkins. It ended in 2010 when its members were referred to the Boys and Girls Club as member and/or tutors for the younger children. Most of the members, now young adults, were in attendance on Saturday, February 10, 2018, at the funeral services and repast of Mrs. Betsy Ann Eichelberger, the woman they called ‘Big Mama’. Mrs. Eichelberger was very supportive of these young adults from early childhood until adulthood when they went away to college or to live in other cities for employment.

She was such an inspiration to them that they came back to say goodbye upon her death. While in the Pact Book Club, they selected her to be the guest speaker at their 1st Banquet and Awards Night. The club’s motto was “Reading Opens the Door to the World”. The theme for the banquet was “Unlock the Doors” from which she spoke. It was held May 21, 2007. She encouraged them to continue to read – telling them of how their ancestors had to sneak and read because it was against the law in some places to read or have someone teach them to read. She shared how as a youngster, she did not have many books to read. In school she had to read 2nd handed books, many outdated, which were passed to her Mt. Sinai Church School from the white school but she read and continued to read at 99 years old.

Since it is Black History month, let’s share about another African American woman who inspired The Pact Book Club members. They were required to read the keynote speech made by Michelle Obama at the Democratic National Convention in 2008.

Most inspirational to the young readers and their parents was when they read Michelle Obama’s speech about values that she and Barrack Obama were taught as youth: “…….that you work hard for what you want in life; that your word is your bond and you do what you say you're going to do; that you treat people with dignity and respect, even if you don't know them, and even if you don't agree with them.”

These values were the discussion of many of our weekly reading sessions as we read books by and about African Americans and other inspirational biographies. Most of these young readers were from single parent homes. However, they know that from their readings they can be successful and not use that as an excuse.

Another favorite part of the speech for the young readers, “And Barack and I set out to build lives guided by these values, and pass them on to the next generation. Because we want our children — and all children in this nation — to know that the only limit to the height of your achievements is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.”

After catching up with what is going on in these young men’s lives presently, it was exciting to know that they adopted those values and are doing quite well. This writer is grateful to have them as a part of her life and appreciates their love for her and her deceased mother – Mrs. Betsy Ann ’Patti’ Eichelberger.

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90 year old Betsy Ann Eichelberger speaking at The Pact Book Club’s Banquet 2007
DOB October 22, 1918 – DOD February 5, 2018

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Charles Hampton, MS State Conference NAACP President with Betsy Ann Eichelberger

Submitted By: Elmetra Patterson

Local Youth Reviews Dr. Charles Drew’s Biography-Reprint March 22, 2008

By Isaac Edwards
The Pact Book Club, treasurer
Dr. Charles R. Drew

During Black History Month each member of the Pact Book Club read a biography of a Black person who contributed in a positive way to the history of the United States and the World. The book I chose was Dr. Charles Drew: Medical Pioneer by Susan Whitehurst, Copyright 2002.

Dr. Charles Drew is remembered today as a skilled doctor and scientist. He is considered the ‘father of the blood bank’. He created the first major U. S. blood banking program. His efforts saved countless lives during World War 11. Dr. Charles started working when he was 12 years old. He sold newspapers on street corners. At Dunbar High School, in Washington, D. C., Charles played a sport each season. He was the star of his football team each fall, played basketball in the winter and ran track and played baseball in the spring. He also swam in the summer.

When Charles’ sister died of tuberculosis, he wanted to become a doctor and he did. Even though, he was the star football players, he was not allowed to eat dinner with his teammates because of the color of his skin. After one big game, the football team went out for dinner and the restaurant had a Jim Crow law that no colored could eat there. This really made Charles mad. He used his anger in a constructive way and continued to excel. He wanted to attend college at Harvard University. He was rejected. Later on, he became a teacher at Harvard University! Charles was an encouragement to other blacks who wanted to become doctors. He died from a crushing injury in a car accident. It was so bad that all the blood in the world could not save him. The president of Harvard spoke at his funeral about how Dr. Drew touched the lives of so many people in the world with his work with plasma and blood transfusions.

I am recommending this book to other youth. It was very inspirational to me as an 11 year old.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Constitution Week Poster Contest Winner

The winner of the Constitution Week poster contest sponsored by the local Nanih Waiya Chapter of the DAR is Jackson Tucker. Jackson is the son of Benji and Nikki Tucker and is a sixth grade student at Winston Academy. Jackson won $25 for his winning poster. Pictured left to right: Mary Tabor -Constitution Week Chairperson, Jackson Tucker, and Bobbie Dewberry -Jackson’s sixth grade teacher.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

LMSD Begins Search for Superintendent

The Louisville Municipal School Board of Trustees met on Tuesday, February 12th and dealt with a
number of issues. At the top of the agenda was the search for a new superintendent. The Board  met with Dr. Mike Waldrop from the Mississippi School Board Association concerning the requirements and needs of the district for a superintendent to replace outgoing superintendent Ken McMullen whose contract will expire in June. Waldrop gave the board several options which included hiring the Mississippi School Board Association to conduct the search for a qualified candidate. After discussion, the board agreed to conduct a special meeting at some point in Jackson with the Association to make final determinations on the search efforts. Waldrop indicated that a reasonable time for the search would be from 8 to 12 weeks.

The board also reviewed renovation project bids at several of the schools. Of most interest were the alternative bids for additional work that needs to be completed. The board is attempting to work within a two million dollar budget for these renovations. One alternate proposal was to repair the north wall of the Eiland gym for $67,700. It was determined that the south wall also needed repair so a possible change in this alternative project is being considered. Another alternative proposal was to put a metal roof in addition to coating on the Nanih Waiya gym.  The coating of the gym was
included in base bids but a needed replacement with a new metal roof was not included and when cost an additional $72,400. The board also reviewed alternate bids for bricking columns at Nanih Waiya and replacing the sidewalk for $101,600, completing drainage work around the administration building of Louisville High School for $22,800, replacing the seating and flooring in the high school gym at Louisville High which included removal asbestos floor tiles for $311,800. Another project that requires attention is the replacement of the roof on the vocational building located on the Louisville High School campus. Recent leaks in this roof has caused some damage to the interior of the structure.

After discussion the board approved the repair of the Eiland gym, the additional cost of replacing the roof at the gym in Nanih Waiya and pursuing the replacement of the roof at the vocational building after review of the warranty on the existing roof.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Region 3 Reading Fair Winners

Cameran Porter and Kristin Jernigan, 7th grade students at Eiland Middle School, participated and won 1st place at the Region 3 Reading Fair in the Group Division held on January 26 and are advancing to the State Reading Fair competition this month.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Black promoted to Captain in Louisville Police Department

Sergeant Karl Black of the Louisville Police Department was recently promoted to the rank of Captain. Black has twenty three years of service in law enforcement including time in Jackson and Philadelphia prior to his service with  LPD. The rank of captain entails the responsibility as shift commander.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Pilot Club of Louisville Pageant Registration Deadline - Feb.9

The Pilot Club of Louisville has planned its annual Pilot Club Pageant for March 24, 2018 and will be held in the Louisville High School Auditorium at 6 p.m. There will be an entry fee at the door and programs will be available to purchase.

This year's the theme will be "Rockin' with the Pilots." The stage will have an array of décor to portray an old diner. The night will be fun for all the girls! The pageant is open to girls ages 4-18. The contestant MUST live in Winston County or attend a school in Winston County. The contestant cannot be married or have been married. The contestant cannot be a mother of a child or be pregnant with a child at the time of the pageant.

Contestants can pick up their registration forms at Swanky Sisters Boutique (located next to Winston Furniture Company), Renansant Bank and see Sherry Suttle, or Bancorp South (Main Street location) and see Heather Thompson. The deadline to register is February 9, 2018.

Any person or business who wishes to purchase an ad for a contestant or a business is encouraged to do so. Contact Kristen Knox at 662-779-5121 or Brandi Krajewski 662-803-4039 to learn more about this. This is a special opportunity to support a child and program will be a great keepsake. Contestants are encouraged to sell ads. We will be giving the HEART OF PILOT AWARD this year in recognitition of the contestant who sells the most ads. The Pilot Club will also give scholarships to the older division. The ad forms will be included in the registration forms.

We will also be selling our annual t-shirts. If you are interested in purchasing a Pilot Club t-shirt, contact any Pilot Club member.

Mark your calendars now! Get registered! 


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

LMSD Athletes Sign On the Dotted Line!!

The boardroom of the Louisville Municipal School District was buzzing as athletes from Louisville High and Nanih Waiya signed to play football with a number of schools across the area. Family and friends gathered to celebrate as the District chose to mark the event in one location rather than the various schools involved. Six young men from Louisville signed their letters this morning and two from Nanih Waiya.

East Mississipi signed two including Pervis Frazier from Louisville and Taemus Glass from Nanih Waiya. Jones Community College also signed two including Daylen Gill and Lakevias Daniels from Louisville. Louisville's Lawilliam Holmes signed with Copiah-Lincoln. Alex Brown and Jacob Cunningham also from Louisville signed with Itawamba.  Chris Smith of Nanih Waiya signed to play ball for Louisiana-Lafayette.

Nanih Waiya's Chris Smith & Taemus Glass

Smith Signs with Louisiana-Lafayette and Glass signs with East Ms.
L to R: Lawilliam Holmes- Co-Lin, Daylen Gill - Jones, Alex Brown - Itawamba, Lakevias Daniels - Jones,
Pervis Frazier - East Ms, Jacob Cunningham - Itawamba

Public Service Commission Closes Book on Kemper

At its open meeting this Tuesday, the Public Service Commission unanimously voted to approve an agreement regarding Mississippi Power Company’s Kemper County Power Plant bringing the lengthy contested proceeding to a close.

The settlement comes as a result of a Commission Order in June 2017, in which the Commission encouraged parties to reach a final solution to the case.

Commissioners stated that any proposal brought before them should result in no rate increase and preferably a rate decrease for residential customers. Additionally, Commissioners insisted that all risk be removed from ratepayers for the lignite coal related assets located at the facility. The agreement approved by the Commission meets both of these requirements, with a forthcoming compliance filing expected to decrease an average residential customer’s bill by 2.4 percent or over $3.00 per month.

To date, Mississippi Power has written off over $6.4 billion on the project. As part of the agreement, the company will not ask to recover any of these losses from ratepayers now, or in the future. The Kemper County Power Plant will continue to produce electricity operating as a natural gas plant, as it has since 2014.

“Through strong Commission leadership we have protected the customers of Mississippi Power, lowered their rates and closed the book on this case. Since 2008, I have made it my mission to ensure that the public interest was fully protected in this case. I can now say that has been accomplished,” said Chairman Brandon Presley.

“Since being elected in 2015, it has been a top priority of mine to resolve Kemper and to ensure Mississippi Power customers are protected with the resolution of this case.” Southern District Commissioner Sam Britton said. “I’m proud of the work that was done to close the Kemper Case with this rate reduction for Mississippi Power customers. The people in South Mississippi have waited long enough.”

“We are pleased that this settlement agreement will result in a rate reduction for Mississippi Power customers,” said Central District Commissioner Cecil Brown. “We are also pleased that Mississippi Power Company customers have never paid, and pursuant to this agreement, will never pay for any of the costs of the failed gasifier.”

Monday, February 5, 2018

Public Service Commission to Discuss Action on Kemper County Power Plant - Feb.6

At its open meeting Tuesday, February 6, 2018 the Public Service Commission expects to make a decision on docket number 2017-AD-112, or Kemper Settlement Docket. The settlement comes as a result of a Commission Order in June 2017, in which the Commission encouraged parties to reach a final solution to Kemper.

Commissioners stated that any proposal brought before them should result in no rate increase and preferably a rate decrease for residential customers. Additionally, Commissioners insisted that all risk be removed from ratepayers for the lignite coal related assets located at the facility and that the certificate be amended to reflect the facility to be run only using natural gas.

The agreement before the Commission, if approved, will end all issues surrounding the Kemper Facility.

When: February 6, 2018 @ 11:30 A.M.

Where: Woolfolk State Office Building
MPSC Lobby
501 N. West Street
Jackson, Mississippi 39201

Who: Chairman Brandon Presley, Northern District
Commissioner Sam Britton, Southern District
Commissioner Cecil Brown, Central District

Friday, February 2, 2018

Winston County Sheriff Searching for Stolen ATV

The Winston County Sheriff's Office is asking the public's assistance for information on the theft of a
4-wheeler on Thursday night or early this morning. A 2017 CAN AM model XMR ATV was stolen from a property in the 4900 block of Hwy 395 sometime after 10:00 pm on Thursday night.

The CAN AM is similar to this photograph but with red stripes and bars. It also has a broken left back fender and a broken front guard.

If you have any information on this crime or the location of this stolen ATV, please contact the Winston County Sheriff's Office at 662-773-5881 or Winston County CrimeStoppers at 662-773-9999.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Billy Metts Honored at Library's Black History Exibit

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Billy Ray Metts, Purple Heart veteran

The theme for the 2018 Black History month is African Americans in Times of War. The theme suggests that contemporary conditions, past and present, give us cause for critical pause in our studies and deliberations to consider the specific and unique issues faced by African Americans in times of war.

Atmos Energy Contributes $2,500 for Economic Development Programs

The Winston County Economic Development District Partnership (WCEDDP) recently received $2,500.00 from Atmos Energy for local economic development programs in Winston County. These funds will be focused on property improvements and workforce development initiatives.

“Atmos Energy is proud to partner with the WCEDDP to spur job creation and enhance existing infrastructure,” stated Linda Waters, Public Affairs Manager for Atmos Energy. “We are committed to economic development growth in Winston County and East Central Mississippi.”

The WCEDDP works closely with partners like Atmos Energy to foster a business environment suitable for growth and attraction. These collaborative efforts are essential in laying the groundwork for future opportunities.

Glen Haab, the Executive Director of the WCEDDP, is eager to leverage the funds to pursue the Partnership’s goals. “These funds will be used to conduct a local workforce development labor study on Winston County as well as perform engineering work on our industrial property. We appreciate the continued support from Atmos Energy and their efforts for being a catalyst for economic development growth in our region.”

Contact: Glen Haab at 662-773-8719 and glen@winstoncounty.com

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Commission Charges 16 Telemarketers for No-Call Violations

Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley announced today that the PSC has charged sixteen telemarketers for violating Mississippi’s No-Call law. The PSC’s investigation found that these companies made hundreds of calls to Mississippians. Should these entities be found to have violated the No-Call law, they are subject to a $5,000 per call. 

MAIS District Reading Fair Winner

Conner Robinson an 11 year old 5th grade student at Winston Academy won first place in the MAIS District Reading Fair and in the Portrayal of Character Category. He will compete in the MAIS Overall Reading Fair in January to be held in Jackson.

Conner picked the book Shiloh to use for his reading project from the Winston County Library, he also made the dog on display. He  incorporated a donation jar into his display to raise money for abused animals. He plans to give the money raised to the Louisville Animal Shelter.

Conner is the son of Amanda Lucas and Chris Robinson.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

National Frozen Foods Corporation Recalls Frozen Green Beans and Frozen Mixed Vegetables Because of Possible Health Risk

National Frozen Foods Corporation (NFFC) is voluntarily recalling a limited quantity of Not-Ready-To Eat Individually Quick Frozen (IQF) green beans and IQF mixed vegetables because they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

The recalled items can be identified by the date codes printed on the back of the 32oz. sized bag or the side of the master case. Only the following codes are affected by this recall:
Brand Listed on PackagingCommodityNet WeightNFFC Item #
Customer #
Lot Information / Code Printed On Packaging
Bountiful Harvest FoundationsCut Green Beans30 LB.22486-11918
Bountiful Harvest OriginalsCut Green Beans30 LB.22486-11908 
MonarchCapri Blend20 LB.58108-00602
MonarchCapri Blend20 LB.58108-00602 
NW TreasureCut Green Beans30 LB.62406-90007 
Simplot ClassicMeadow Blend32 oz.71179-67166965AUG081705H
Sysco ClassicCut Green Beans32 oz.74865-04977
Sysco ImperialWhole Green Beans32 oz.74865-24917 
(No Brand Name)Cut Green Beans30 LB.15001-0107038627-7H28A3N
(No Brand Name)Cut Green Beans30 LB.15001-0107038627-7H28B3N
(No Brand Name)Cut Green Beans30 LB.15001-0107038627-7H28C3N
(No Brand Name)Cut Green Beans30 LB.15001-0107038627-7H28D3N
(No Brand Name)Cut Green Beans30 LB.15001-0107038627-7H28E3N
Valamont*Cut Green Beans32 oz.72608-1208238474-7H08F3N
ValamontCut Green Beans20 LB.72608-1215038510-7H11F3N
The World's Harvest*Cut Green Beans32 oz.WRH99-FV02138475-7H08F3N
The World's Harvest*Cut Green Beans32oz.WRH99-FV02138475-7H08G3N
* The 32 oz. inner clear poly bag has only lot code printed.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Winston County Self-Help Youth Group’s 11th Saving Rural America Conference

On Friday, January 19, 2018, 190 high school seniors and juniors from Louisville High School and approximately 30 adults met at the Louisville Coliseum to attend workshops with the theme: Cultivating Diversity, Producing Changes for the Future Generation. To present the workshops were eleven diverse presenters:

Monday, January 22, 2018

2018 Black History Month Theme - African Americans in Times of War

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William James Eichelberger – World War I soldier

The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), the founders of Black History Month, continues to view February as the critical month for carrying forth its mission. Over the years, the themes reflect changes in how people of African descent in the United States have viewed themselves, the influence of social movements on racial ideologies, and the aspirations of the black community. The 103rd Annual Conference met in Indianapolis September 27 - October 1, 2017 to receive papers from writers and researchers on the theme for 2018 which is AFRICAN AMERICANS IN TIMES OF WAR. The theme commemorates the end of the First World War in 1918 – 100 years ago.

Since this writer returned home to Louisville, MS after living away for 42 years, the Winston County Library has allowed me to curate an exhibit during Black History Month with a reception the last Saturday of February each year. The exhibits are focused on the theme of the year as selected by ASALH. This year's theme is dear to my heart as my father, five of my eight brothers and many of my nephews and nieces served in the military. Brother Fred Eichelberger loss his life in an army jeep accident near Bakersfield, CA while serving his country. My father, William James Eichelberger was drafted into that Great World War over 100 years ago and served in France. He passed when I was 13 years old at a time when I was too young to ask much about his experiences in the war and therefore, I have learned from ASALH and by studying the book by Emmett J. Scott, The American Negro in the World War. This has given me some idea of what it was like for him as an African American soldier before, after and during the Great War.

This is a request from the public to contact me, 510.672-2106 or librarian Beth Edwards at the Winston County Library, 662.773-3212 to let us know if you have any photos of African American veterans or any information about them from any of the wars. Also, any photos of any African American women who worked to help with the wars. We would like to use copies of them in the Black History Month exhibit.

Submitted by: Elmetra Patterson

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Final Tax Status of Winston Plywood Should Be a "Win" for LMSD

After months of delay and legal wrangling, the property tax status of Winston Plywood should be resolved by the next meetings of the Winston County Board of Supervisors and the City of Louisville Officials. Delays in paper work and legal requirements for the settling of a “Fee in Lieu” tax status of the Winston Plywood facility in Louisville created some issues for the County, City and most significantly the Louisville Municipal School District.

The company had initially filed for a ten-year tax-exempt status on the facility, equipment and inventory. This is typical and a common practice for new industrial construction due to the added economic boost they often bring to a community. The exemption would only apply to the county and city. The school district, LMSD, would receive its full tax dollars under this status.   

That exemption has been on hold since early summer as the company filed and completed paperwork to qualify for a “Fee in Lieu of Taxes" status which is determined by the Mississippi Development Authority (MDA). To qualify for Fee in Lieu, an investment must meet certain requirements including at least $100 million of private investment. Under this arrangement, tax dollars paid to the school district could be reduced by as much as two thirds but the county and city would share in the funds. In effect, the company would reduce their tax burden but Winston County and the City of Louisville would receive significant revenue that they could not obtain under a tax-exempt status. The overall effect would be a tax dollar win for Louisville and Winston County but a significant loss for LMSD.

Local officials received notice last week that the ‘Fee In Lieu” status had not been approved and that the consideration of the ten-year tax-exempt can now be considered at the local level. Approval of the tax exemption is expected at the next meetings of county and city officials.

The result should provide a significant source of revenue to the School District of $757,026 (after collection costs) for the 2017 tax year. If Fee In Lieu had been approved that revenue would have dropped to roughly $265,000. 

Friday, January 19, 2018

LMSD Recognizes Teachers of the Year

Melanie Watkins, Billie Jean Fulton, Jennifer Sanborn, Mary Ashford,
Carolyn Butler, Shane McDaniel, not pictured - Christy White
In their board meeting on Thursday night, the administration and the trustees of the Louisville
Municipal School District recognized the 2017-2018 Teachers of the Year from each school in the district. Teachers are honored for their work and efforts throughout the school year. LMSD Teachers of the Year include:

Fair Elementary - Carolyn Butler
Louisville Elementary - Christy White
Eiland Middle School - Mary Ashford
Louisville High School - Billie Jean Fulton
Nanih Waiya - Melanie Watkins
Noxapater - Jennifer Sanborn
WLCTC - Shane McDaniel
District Teacher of the Year - Mary Ashford

Carolyn Butler - Fair Elem
Bille Jean Fulton - LHS
Melanie Watkins - NW

Mary Ashford - Eiland

Jennifer Sanborn - NOX
Shane McDaniel - WLCTC

Mary Ashford - LMSD Teacher of the Year