ANCHORAGE, Alaska – Friday the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development (DEED) announced that Catherine Walker at Dimond High School in Anchorage has been named the 2024 Alaska Teacher of the Year.
During the open nomination period Walker received nominations from students, community members, colleagues, and administrators. Her innovation and dedication to her students, school, and community was evident through their words, and confirmed throughout the rest of the evaluation process.
A graduate of Brandeis University in Waltham, MA, Walker has been teaching at Dimond High School in the Anchorage School District since 2017. She has taught Engineering Essentials, Unmanned Aviation Science, Oceanography, Marine Biology, Biology, and 9th-grade Science. Walker started many of these courses at Dimond, including Project Lead the Way Engineering Essentials. Walker sponsors Battle of the Books, Green Effects Recycling, and the National Ocean Science Bowl Club, and serves as a board member of the Alaska Society for Technology in Education. Walker creates a classroom environment focused on career-oriented problem solvers in the community with a focus on mental health through high expectations with interdisciplinary lessons. Walker mentors new and pre-service teachers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and Prince William Sound College. She has a passion for Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) careers and works diligently to create a support system for her students to achieve in these fields.
“Congratulations to Ms. Walker for earning this great distinction,” said Governor Mike Dunleavy. “As a former teacher and administrator, I know how much of a difference it makes when a skilled teacher goes above and beyond for their students, and I’m thankful to have Ms. Walker teaching in Alaska.”
“Congratulations to Ms. walker on this recognition and we celebrate all of her accomplishments over her 17 years of being a public school teacher,” said Heidi Teshner, DEED’s Acting Commissioner. “Ms. Walker’s problem-based career-oriented lessons encourage students of all abilities to ignite their interest in STEM-related work and activities that will benefit them long after high school. Her dedication to teaching is an inspiration to all and her students are lucky to have her as a teacher.”
As Alaska’s Teacher of the Year, Walker will participate in programming offered by the Council of Chief State School Officers with other state Teachers of the Year. Walker will also be Alaska’s candidate for the National Teacher of the Year.