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Here are New Jersey’s county teachers of the year

NWE JERSEY – The New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE) Thursday announced the 21 educators who have been named the state’s 2022-2023 County Teachers of the Year.

“These 21 educators are exemplary models of the kinds of dynamic teaching that takes place in New Jersey’s classrooms,” said Governor Phil Murphy. “The quality of our schools is driven in no small part through the strength of our teaching workforce, represented by these County Teachers of the Year. It’s no wonder New Jersey public schools are among the best in the nation.”

“Today we recognize the next cohort 21 County Teachers of the Year for their dedication, effort, and service. Educators have a profound and lifelong impact through their ability to ignite the minds of young people,” said Dr. Angelica Allen- McMillian, Acting Education Commissioner. “Their work contributes to the success of their students in the classroom and into adulthood. Congratulations to all of our 2022-2023 County Teachers of the Year!”

The County Teachers of the Year will network with educators throughout the state and serve as ambassadors for New Jersey’s public schools during the upcoming school year.

A panel of educators will select the New Jersey State Teacher of the Year from among the 21 County Teachers of the Year based on written applications, video submissions, and interviews with the top finalists. The New Jersey State Teacher of the Year is typically announced at the State Board of Education’s October meeting and will go on to represent New Jersey in competing for the title of National Teacher of the Year.

Individual schools nominate exceptional educators for County Teacher of the Year through the Governor’s Educator of the Year Program, which promotes a positive school culture by acknowledging the hard work and dedication of outstanding teachers and educational services professionals.

New Jersey’s 2022-2023 County Teachers of the Year County Name Position School School District
Atlantic Brenna Baker Biology Teacher Absegami High School Greater Egg Harbor Regional High School District
Bergen Gina DiMaggio English Teacher Lyndhurst High School Lyndhurst School District
Burlington Sarah Sherman English Teacher Rancocas Valley Regional High School Rancocas Valley Regional High School District
Camden Michael Weppler Mathematics Teacher Winslow Township Middle School Winslow Township School District
Cape May Stephen Serano Culinary Arts Teacher Wildwood High School Wildwood School District
Cumberland Jennifer Carbone Science Teacher ExCEL Program Bridgeton Public School District
Essex Kristen Dunleavy Special Education Teacher Redwood Elementary School West Orange School District



Lisa Dolby

English Teacher and Teacher of Students

with Disabilities

Delsea Regional High School Delsea Regional School District



Ariel Babcock

Social Studies Teacher & Media


Weehawken High School Weehawken Township School District



Brian Smith


English Teacher

Delaware Valley Regional High School Delaware Valley Regional School


Mercer Leigh Cline Second Grade Teacher Parkway Elementary School Ewing Township School District
Middlesex Leana Malinowsky Second Grade Teacher Private Nicholas Minue School Carteret School District
Monmouth Kimberly Grigoli Kindergarten Teacher Spring Lake Heights Elementary School Spring Lake Heights School District
Morris Andrea Ritacco Business Education Teacher Whippany Park High School Hanover Park Regional High School District



Christine Girtain

Science Teacher & Director of Authentic

Science Research

Toms River High School North & South Toms River Regional School District
Passaic Emily Blumberg Science Teacher Passaic Preparatory Academy Passaic School District
Salem Erika Knorr Kindergarten Teacher Elmer Elementary School Pittsgrove Township School District
Somerset Ian Evans English Language Arts Teacher Hillsborough Middle School Hillsborough Township School District
Sussex Christine O’Brien- Mase Art and Photography Teacher Sparta High School Sparta School District
Union Candice Testa First Grade Teacher William J. McGinn Elementary School Scotch Plains-Fanwood School District
Warren Daryl Detrick Computer Science Teacher Warren Hills Regional High School Warren Hills Regional School District

More information is available on the Governor’s Educator of the Year Program website.

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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