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Centenary University adjunct professor and Chester teacher Joseph Pizzo named 2020 National Educator of the Year

HACKETTSTOWN, NJ (Warren County) – Centenary University Adjunct Professor of Communications Joseph S. Pizzo has been named the 2020 National Educator of the Year by the Association for Middle Level Education, an organization comprised of over 54,000 teachers, principals, counselors, and other education professionals.

The honor recognizes outstanding middle school educators who make a significant impact on the lives of adolescents through leadership, vision, and advocacy. The award will be presented at the 47thannual Conference for Middle Level Education (#AMLE20), which will be held virtually from Oct. 23-25.

A resident of Bound Brook, Pizzo has served as an adjunct faculty member at Centenary for more than 28 years at the undergraduate level in the English, education, and business departments. He has also taught in the Business Department at the graduate level. Pizzo holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from the College of New Jersey.

In addition to his role at Centenary, he teaches integrated language arts at Black River Middle School in Chester, where he is also co-director of drama. Calling the award “a great honor,” Pizzo recently noted, “Teaching at the middle level takes a great deal of energy, patience, integrity, and flexibility, but the rewards are tremendous. We teachers make a great difference in the lives of our students, and our students make a great difference in our lives as well.”

Pizzo promotes student engagement through activities that honor diverse cultures and creativity, while instilling a sense of pride and accomplishment in his students. He frequently shares his students’ work with local newspapers and offers his expertise to fellow educators through local, regional, and national workshops and professional organizations.

“This national recognition speaks to the high caliber of professors at Centenary University,” said Amy D’Olivo, Ph.D., vice president for academic affairs. “It’s exciting to see a member of our faculty honored with such a prestigious award. Joe is an excellent instructor, who is truly dedicated to seeing all of his students succeed.”

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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