You are here

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.

Supported by
Denver7 The  Denver Channel Logo

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

2022 Colorado Teacher of the Year

The Colorado Department of Education has announced the 2022 Colorado Teacher of the Year. Autumn Rivera teaches sixth-grade science at Glenwood Springs Middle School in Roaring Fork School District. 

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.

Read the full news release from Oct. 22, 2021.

2022 Colorado Teacher of the Year Finalists

2022 Colorado Teacher of the Year Finalists

The finalists for the Colorado Teacher of the Year 2022 award, listed and pictured above in alphabetical order by last name, are:

  • Carrianna DePace - Mountain Vista Community School, Harrison School District 2
  • Julia Ferre - SkyView Academy, Douglas County School District
  • Emmylou Harmon - West Grand High School, West Grand School District
  • Ashley Lowe - Falcon Middle School, School District 49
  • Autumn Rivera - Glenwood Springs Middle School, Roaring Fork School District
  • Cristina Vanzo - Craig Middle School, Moffat County School District RE1
  • Paula Wilderman - Ascent Classical Academy of Douglas County, Colorado Charter School Institute

Read the Sept. 20, 2021, news release for more information on all of the candidates.


Program Partners

Colorado Education Association Logo

Adams State University Logo

Blue Bell Ice Cream Logo


Teacher of the Year Archives

Recent Teacher of the Year Winners

Veteran Teacher of the Year Winners


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, please 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