STAMFORD, CT – June 16, 2020 – The Stamford Public Education Foundation’s 13th annual Excellence in Education Awards will be an evening celebrating Stamford leaders and educators who are being recognized for their commitment to public education. The event will take place virtually on Monday, June 22nd, streaming live from from 6PM-7PM.  Optional virtual tickets to support SPEF’s programming are available by visiting


This year, SPEF will be honoring the following award recipients:

  • SPEF Leadership Award: Wendy Block and Vicki Craver, founders of Impact Fairfield County
  • SPEF Philanthropy Award: Pitney Bowes, being accepted by Kathleen Ryan Mufson, Director of Global Corporate Citizenship & Philanthropy and President, Pitney Bowes Foundation with the 2020 SPEF Philanthropy Award
  • SPEF Educator Award: 20 educators were nominated by their Parent-Teacher Organizations in recognition of the exceptional learning environment they have created for their students. The recipient of the award will be announced at the event and will receive a $1,000 donation for their classroom/ learning environment.


The 20 nominees for the SPEF Educator Award include:

  • Brenda Zanga, Academy of Information Technology & Engineering
  • Beth Orstad, APPLES Early Childhood Education Center
  • Anthony Scaturchio, Cloonan Middle School
  • Bill Margiotta, Davenport Ridge Elementary School
  • Jason Deluna, Dolan Middle School
  • Allyson Schenker, Hart Elementary School
  • Maureen Calorossi, Stark Elementary School
  • Jessica Febbraio, KT Murphy Elementary School
  • Ryan Henderson, Northeast Elementary School
  • Christina Dinardo, Rippowam Middle School
  • Steve Staley, Rogers International School
  • Kristyn O’Brien, Roxbury Elementary School
  • James Neufeld, Scofield Magnet Middle School
  • Berta Yanez, Springdale Elementary School
  • Melissa Giordano, Stamford High School
  • Joseph Zaremski, Stillmeadow Elementary School
  • Seth Goldstein, Strawberry Hill School
  • Daynel Brown, Toquam Elementary School
  • Jane Lambert, Turn of River Middle School
  • Carley Grant, Westhill High School

In addition, Stamford Public Schools will be honoring the 2020-2021 Teacher of the Year winners:  Individuals Achieving Independence Teacher Lisa Legato-Howlett 2020-2021 Stamford Teacher of the Year, Emeritus and Toquam Magnet Teacher Barbara Hanauer, 2020-2021 Stamford Teacher of the Year.

SPEF is especially grateful to the sponsors of the evening for their support for public education, including:  NatWest Markets (Title); AXA IM, Pitney Bowes (Summa Cum Laude); First County Bank, Henkel, Impact Fairfield County, Patricia & Robert Phillips, and State Street Global (Magna Cum Laude); Berkowitz & Hanna LLC and Garden Homes (Cum Laude); Carmody, Torrance, Sandak & Hennessey, Eleanor & Mort Lowenthal, Eileen & Fred Springer, Stamford Bank & Trust, and Stamford Board of Realtors (Honors).


About SPEF: Founded in 1996, the mission of the Stamford Public Education Foundation (SPEF) is to deliver educational programs and resources that elevate student, educator, and parent success by bridging the gap between needs in the Stamford Public Schools and resources in our community. The Foundation strives to enable each and every student in the Stamford Public Schools to graduate high school and enter college, career training, or fulltime employment ready to succeed. For further information, visit