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Colorado Teacher of the Year

Colorado Teacher of the Year

About the Program

Each year, the Colorado Teacher of the Year Program honors an exceptionally dedicated, knowledgeable and skilled K-12 classroom teacher to represent the entire profession in the state. The selected teacher will automatically become Colorado's nominee for the National Teacher of the Year competition. The national program is a project of the Council of Chief State School Officers. Visit the National Teacher of the Year program webpage for more information.

The Colorado Teacher of the Year receives many professional development opportunities and, along with the country’s other teachers of the year, is honored at a special ceremony at the White House and gets the opportunity to go to NASA’s Space Camp. The teacher also becomes a member of the Colorado Education Commissioner’s Teacher Cabinet.

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Congratulations Autumn Rivera Glenwood Springs Middle School Roaring Fork School District 2022 Colorado Teacher of the Year

2022 Colorado Teacher of the Year named finalist for national honor

Autumn Rivera, Colorado’s 2022 Teacher of the Year, has been named one of four finalists for the 2022 National Teacher of the Year award by the Council of Chief State School Officers.

Rivera has taught sixth grade at her current school for nine years. She is also an adjunct professor in the education department at Colorado Mountain College. During her more 16 years as an educator, she has worked with students from elementary to postgraduate levels. Rivera is a member of the Colorado Science Conference Planning Committee and the Steering Committee with the Colorado Science Education Network. She is the Region 3 Elementary Board representative for the Colorado Association of Science Teachers and volunteers with the American Association of Chemistry Teachers.

In addition to her work in the field of science, Rivera serves on the Roaring Fork School District Interest Based Bargaining Committee and is her building’s advisor for the district’s Mentor and Advisor Program. She is the design facilitator for schoolwide events as well as a school track coach.

Rivera was announced as the state’s finalist for the 2022 Teacher of the Year in October.

Nominations now open for 2023 Colorado Teacher of the Year

Do you know an exceptionally dedicated, knowledgeable and skilled K-12 teacher? Nominate them to be the next Colorado Teacher of the Year!

Complete a brief online survey form with some basic information about the educator you're nominating for this award. Once a teacher is nominated, they are sent a notification and invitation to apply. The 2023 Colorado Teacher of the Year application is anticipated to open in the spring.

Nominate a teacher


Program Partners

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Teacher of the Year Archives

Recent Colorado Teachers of the Year

Veteran Colorado Teachers of the Year 


Colorado Council of the Network of State Teachers of the Year

The Colorado Council of the Network of State Teachers of the Year (NSTOY) is an organization committed to the preservation and enhancement of the Colorado Teacher of the Year Program. The Council works with the Colorado State Department of Education and other corporate and organizational partners to celebrate teaching excellence through the recognition of educators who have inspired a love for learning in their students, and who have distinguished themselves in the profession. All Colorado State Teachers of the Year, as well as each year's finalists, are invited to participate.

For more information for upcoming meetings, as well as how to join, visit the Colorado Council's website.


Contact Us

For more information on this program, please contact:

Kim Burnham
Competitive Grants and Awards Supervisor
(303) 866-6916
Burnham_K@cde.state.co.us