Angelia Ebner, fifth grade teacher at Maricopa Elementary School.

Already named a finalist for Arizona Teacher of the Year, Angelia Ebner, a fifth grade teacher at Maricopa Elementary School, has now advanced to be one of five Ambassadors of Excellence.

From this group of educators, the Arizona Education Foundation will choose the 2016 Teacher of the Year.

“This process has been amazing,” Ebner said in response. “I feel so blessed and honored to be on this journey.”

The final announcement will be made at the Arizona Education Foundation’s Nov. 19 Awards Banquet at the Arizona Biltmore. More than 500 Arizona educators, elected officials and business leaders are expected to attend this year’s event.

“Teaching is my passion and I have been lucky enough to also make it my life’s work,” Ebner said. “I am dedicated to my students and fellow teachers. The recognition has never been the reason I am a teacher, but in all honesty I’m working very hard to quickly become comfortable with it.”

The five Ambassadors for Excellence are:

* Jennifer Anglin, eighth grade English teacher at Flowing Wells Junior High School of Flowing Wells Unified School District;
* Angelia Ebner, fifth grade teacher at Maricopa Elementary School of Maricopa Unified School District;
* Christine Marsh, high school English teacher at Chaparral High School of Scottsdale Unified School District;
* Beth Snyder, sixth trade Science teacher at Akimel A-al Middle School of Kyrene School District;
* Michael Vargas, freshman physics teacher at Pinnacle High School of Paradise Valley Unified School District.

“The opportunity to advocate for students and teachers at a state level is more than I had thought professionally possible just five years ago,” Ebner said. “After pursuing National Board Certification I found a clear way to articulate my professional practice and upon achieving board certification in 2012 I felt called to help other teachers realize the impact that reflective accomplished teaching has on students and our profession.

“I have continued this journey of teacher leadership and advocacy as a member of the Maricopa Education Association. Now, my journey is providing me a more public way of advocating for students and teachers. I have met outstanding educators through this endeavor and I am humbled to be in their company.”

In making the announcement of Ebner’s advancement as ambassador, MUSD Human Resources Director Tom Becket said, “The District is very proud of Angie’s accomplishments and we wish her well during this final phase of her well-earned honor.”

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