July 19, 2021

AFA Announces 2021 National Teacher of the Year

Arlington, Va. (July 19, 2021) – The Air Force Association is thrilled to announce that Megan Tucker, of Lovettsville, Va., has been named the 2021 AFA National Teacher of the Year presented by Rolls-Royce. The program recognizes classroom teachers for their accomplishments and achievements in exciting K-12 students about science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and preparing students to use and contribute to tomorrow’s technologies.

A 17-year veteran of teaching, Tucker has served the last five years as STEAM Specialist (K-5)/ Instructional Facilitator of Technology (K-5 and Professional Development)/Gifted Teacher (K-5 and Professional Development)/Intervention Coordinator, and STEAM Curriculum Consultant at Hillsboro Charter Academy, Hillsboro, Va.

“Ms. Tucker, our 2021 National Teacher of the Year, is another great STEM educator selected to be a part of AFA’s prestigious Teacher of the Year program,” said Jim Hannam, AFA Vice Chairman of Aerospace Education. “All of the finalists were outstanding, enthusiastic instructors and it was a tough call for our team to make from among the fantastic nominees across the states and overseas. Infected with what she calls ‘aviation fascination,’ Ms. Tucker is an exemplary representative of America’s innovative teachers for AFA and Rolls-Royce.”

Nominated by AFA Gabriel Chapter #433, Chapter President Mike Winters met Ms. Tucker when she invited him to participate in a “Flight Funday.”

“I have participated in many programs that aim to inspire a passion for the STEM fields,” Winters said. “None of these could hold a candle to Megan’s infectious enthusiasm that spread through the whole school! It is all the more impressive that she is able to bring this enthusiasm down to the elementary school level. The Air Force Association is blessed to have a teacher so dedicated to teaching aviation fundamentals through a school-wide elementary STEM program. She is truly making a positive impact on the future of Air & Space Power at the earliest stage of learning.”

Ms. Tucker achieved her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and her master’s degree in Science Education.

“We congratulate Megan Tucker for this well-deserved recognition as AFA’s National Teacher of the Year,” said Darryl Roberson, Rolls-Royce, Senior Vice President, and Air Force Lt. Gen. (Ret.). “Her enthusiasm and excitement inspire her students, and her focus on aerospace will help foster the next generation of scientists and technology leaders required by the Air Force and industry. Rolls-Royce is proud to support Megan and all teachers recognized in the National Teacher of the Year program, and to support AFA’s Aerospace Education program as platinum sponsor.”

The second and third place winners for AFA National Teachers of the Year presented by Rolls-Royce are:

Ashlie Blackstone-Smith
Second Place Winner
Cranbrook Kingswood Middle School for Girls
Bloomfield Hills, MI

Jennifer Donais
Third Place Winner
Amesbury Middle School
Amesbury, MA

The Air Force Association is grateful to its Aerospace Education Program Platinum sponsor, Rolls-Royce, for their continued sponsorship of the AFA Teacher of the Year program, allowing the program to continue honoring educational innovators in STEM. The AFA Teacher of the Year program dates back to the early 1990s when the mission to recognize classroom teachers (K-12) for their innovative and successful instructional programs originally began.

The Air Force Association is a non-profit, independent, professional military and aerospace education association. Our mission is to promote dominant U.S. Air and Space Forces as the foundation of a strong National Defense; to honor and support our Airmen, Guardians, and their Families; and to remember and respect our enduring Heritage.