Contact: Wendel Sloan at 505.562.2253
Reporter: Britt Hochhausler
PORTALES – Four graduates of Eastern New Mexico University in Portales were finalists for the 2003 New Mexico
Teacher of the Year. They are Joe Strickland, Richard Dale Jones, janice Culp and Ricky Lino Espinoza.
Joe Strickland, a fourth-grade teacher at Lincoln-Jackson Arts Academy in Clovis, was recognized as second-runner up. He has been teaching for nine years. He received a bachelor's degree in psychology from ENMU in 1987, and is a member of the International Reading Association.
He has chaired many committees at the Academy and has worked with wellness programs in the school, and co-authored "Working with the Emotionally Sensitive Adolescent," an article that was published in the 1998/1999 issue of Human Development. Mr. Strickland was given the Teacher of the Year award at Lincoln-Jackson in 2001-2002.
Richard Dale Jones is a math teacher for grades 9-12 at Portales High School. He received a bachelor's degree in mathematics from ENMU in 1992, and has been teaching for nine-and-a-half years.
He is a member of the National Education Association (NEA), the National Council for Teachers of Mathematics and the New Mexico Association of Student Councils. Mr. Jones is also an assistant varsity coach for girls' basketball at Portales High School. The team recently won the state championship at The Pit at the University of New Mexico.
Janice Culp is a physical education teacher at Central Primary School in Bloomfield. She received a bachelor's degree in physical education from ENMU in 1980, and has been teaching elementary and secondary education for 22 years.
She is co-president of the Bloomfield Education Association of NEA, the Bloomfield School District Equity Conciliation Team chair, and a member of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education and Dance. She promoted "brain-compatible teaching and learning" in her lesson plans and curriculum, and has made presentations on brain-based classrooms, including gym activities and rhythmic counting. Ms. Culp has taught many classes, including English, health, driver's education, hunter safety and physical education. She also coaches basketball and track.
Ricky Lino Espinoza is an environmental science teacher at Shiprock High School. He
received a bachelor's degree in general science teaching from ENMU in 1987, and has been teaching for 16 years.
He is club sponsor for Shiprock High School's Science Club. According to the Center for Teaching Excellence newsletter, he is a member of the Aztec Lions Club, the New Mexico Activities Association, and the New Mexico Strengthening Quality Schools program.
The 2003 New Mexico Teacher of the Year program was sponsored by the Center for Teaching Excellence, a program funded by the New Mexico State Legislature through ENMU.
For more information about the Center for Teaching Excellence, call 505.562.2266.
Richard Dale Jones
Ricky Lino Espinoza