Junior Kindergarten teacher Tiffany Morikis has been named the 2022-23 Catherine Silver McNamara Award recipient, Head of School Sarah Johnston announced on May 18. Tiffany, or “Ms. M” as she is affectionately known to children and parents alike, was presented the award to faculty and staff in a ceremony hosted at the Merryweather Outdoor Classroom.
“In Tiffany’s presence, the atmosphere is transformed as positivity dances in the air, weaving its magic through every interaction,” said Mrs. Johnston. “With a passion for teaching, Tiffany embarks on a daily mission of instilling knowledge and igniting curiosity in the hearts of her students. She guides them with a kind hand and empowers them to reach for the stars, for she knows that each child possesses untold potential waiting to be unleashed. In honoring Tiffany, we honor the true essence of education—the ability to ignite a spark, nurture dreams, and shape a better tomorrow.”
The McNamara Award is given annually to an Old Trail faculty member to recognize outstanding service to student achievement. It is a coveted honor as nominations are submitted by OTS community members, including parents and peers, and is determined by an Awards Committee consisting of members of the school's leadership, a faculty member with more than 20 years of experience at Old Trail, and the previous year's recipient.
“‘Ms. M.’ continues to be a presence in our child’s experience at Old Trail—just like she is for so many students,” wrote a parent. “This teacher has a gift, and she gives it to each student she encounters at Old Trail every day. This gift is seeing each student as they are, meeting them where they are, and connecting with them in a way that makes them feel safe, welcome and supported.”
Tiffany is completing her 11th school year at Old Trail this spring.
Criteria for the Awards Committee's consideration include exceptional performance in the classroom; creative teaching skills; or any unique accomplishment that leads to outstanding student achievement that is deserving of this special recognition.
About the Award
The Catherine Silver McNamara Faculty Award was established by the family of Catherine Silver McNamara '70, following her untimely death in 1983. Through this annual award, Catherine's late father and Old Trail School Trustee Emeritus R. Bruce Silver; her late mother and former Old Trail School librarian Peggy Silver; her sisters, Margie Silver Allen '68 and Patricia Silver '72; her husband, Robert McNamara, and brother-in-law Peter Allen honor Catherine by recognizing a member of the Old Trail faculty or administration for outstanding service to student achievement, which "has played such a meaningful part in our lives, and which continues to make Old Trail a truly exceptional school."