2023 LFLTA Teacher of the Year Nominees
2023 LFLTA Teacher of the year: Dr. Jerry Parker
Dr. Jerry Parker is an instructor of French and Spanish at Southeastern Louisiana University. Dr. Parker is a graduate of Southeastern where he earned a B.A. in French Language and Literature as well as an Ed. D. in Educational Leadership. He also has a M.A. in French from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Throughout his career, Dr. Parker has been published in various books, textbooks, and peer-reviewed journals, and has extensive experience giving academic presentations. He is also an active member of multiple language organizations such as AATF and AATSP. Dr. Parker’s research is described by a colleague as “far-reaching, innovative and avant-garde to the field of world language education”, with his focus on multicultural education, including diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. He is also described by a student as having “an infectious tenacity that rubs off on his students”.
Finalist: Carmen Cuppens
Carmen Cuppens is a Spanish Teacher at Westlake High School in Westlake, LA. She describes herself as “a passionate and caring educator who believes that all children can learn and thrive in a communicative language learning environment”. A graduate of McNeese State University, Ms. Cuppens began her education in her home country of Belgium, studying economics and modern languages. She has experience teaching middle school and high school, and has served as the World Languages Lead Teacher for the Calcasieu Parish School Board since 2016. Her colleagues describe her as a seamless multitasker, a forward thinker, a charismatic people-person, and a respected leader and presenter.
Finalist: Teresa York
Teresa York is a Spanish Teacher at Metairie Park Country Day School in Metairie, LA. She is a graduate of Rice University, Bowling Green State University, as well as two separate study abroad programs in Spain. She began her teaching career at Bowling Green State University as a graduate assistant, then continued on to teach in Spain, San Diego, St. Martin’s Episcopal School, and her current school in Metairie. Ms. York is an experienced presenter, having shared her knowledge at a variety of conferences since 2019. She has also served as a program coordinator at Tulane, a study abroad advisor, and served in a variety of roles for a study abroad program.
In her work as an educator, Ms. York has a “student-centered approach, a commitment to professional growth, and a desire to give back to the community”. Her supervisor describes her as a “positive, energetic, and thoughtful language teacher who puts her students' needs first and believes that every child is capable of acquiring a second language”.