The Baltimore Ravens and M&T Bank have announced their 2020 Touchdown for Teachers finalists and grand prize winner. The program recognizes and honors local teachers for their leadership, dedication and commitment to education, and for outstanding service to their school, students and community.
The 2020 Touchdown for Teachers finalists are:
Katie McDonald – Westminster High School (grand prize winner)
Dan Patrylak– Pasadena Elementary School
Sharon Ball– Patterson High School
The grand prize was awarded to Katie McDonald, who is the LFI (Learning for Independence) teacher at Westminster High School in Westminster, MD.
As a special education teacher for the past six years, Ms. McDonald has taught students who are intellectually, emotional and/or medically impaired. McDonald currently coaches the Corollary Sports Program – a program that introduces special needs students to sports such as Bocce Ball, Bowling and Corn Toss. She also played an integral role in leading efforts to create an annual Special Needs Prom at Westminster High School. Prior to this, McDonald coached the Westminster High School field hockey team – leading them to a Class 3A state championship title in 2014.
McDonald also serves as co-coordinator of Westminster High School's food pantry, which benefits students, local families and community members. She has gained a strong reputation for her tireless volunteering and commitment to ending hunger in Carroll County. Most recently, McDonald has been coordinating ongoing food distribution efforts with the Maryland Food Bank and Together We Own It to ensure local families don't go hungry during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The three finalists will each receive a personalized Ravens jersey and an award plaque. The runners-up will also be awarded $1,000 in grant funds, while McDonald will be presented with a check for $4,000 in grant funds. Additionally, she will receive a classroom visit by a Ravens' player, accompanied by Ravens mascot Poe and cheerleaders during the 2020-21 school year.(Details to follow the week of the event.)
"It's important to recognize the outstanding work our teachers are doing in the community," said Augie Chiasera, President of M&T Bank's Greater Baltimore and Chesapeake markets. "Teachers can literally turn lives around and inspire our young people to reach their potential. The Touchdown for Teachers program is a way to celebrate the positive impact teachers have on students and the entire community."