ACSA Awards Program

Program Overview

ACSA Awards Program

One of ACSA's priorities is to ensure that school leaders are recognized for their excellence. Through our annual awards program, we honor students, administrators and community organizations for their achievements and their dedication to public education at both the regional and state levels.

Program Overview:

  • State Special Awards: (state level only)
    – Ferd Kiesel Memorial Distinguished Service Award
    – Marcus Foster Memorial Award for Administrator Excellence
  • Special Awards: (region and state levels)
    – Valuing Diversity Award
    – Partners in Educational Excellence Award
    – Robert E. Kelly Award
  • Administrators of the Year (region and state levels)
  • Every Student Succeeding Program (region and state levels)

Contact Us

ACSA Awards Program
Emily Agpoon, Program Coordinator
eagpoon(at) | (916) 329-3833 (call or text)

Every Student Succeeding Program

Each year, ACSA recognizes 19 pre-K-adult students, one from each geographic region, as well as two California adult education students, for overcoming the odds and achieving success. Find out more.

Other ACSA Awards

Start your ACSA award nomination and log into the awards platform.

Program Calendar

  • April 15: State recipients announced for 2024
  • Aug. 1: Nomination window for 2025 Awards Program opens
  • Nov. 15: State recipients recognized in San Diego
  • Jan. 16, 2025: Deadline for all 2025 nominations
  • Feb. 6: Deadline for state finalists to be submitted by regions

Help & Resources

General program info:

  • Awards Program Overview
    See a snapshot program overview, with information on each of the award categories.
  • Frequently Asked Questions
    Read the most commonly asked questions about the program and nomination process, including questions about eligibility and supporting documents.
  • The Vetting Process
    Learn how nominees are vetted by their peers at each level of the program.
  • Program Timeline
    View a detailed timeline of the annual awards program from start to finish.

Starting your nomination:

Region manager resources:

For additional help, please contact the awards coordinator.

Nomination Forms

2025 Awards Program

  • Award Nomination Portal

    The nomination window for 2025 awards will open on Aug. 1.

    You can view and access copies of your submitted nominations via the online nomination portal at any time. Just log in and look under My entries on the home screen, using the "Active season" dropdown to search past seasons.

2025 Every Student Succeeding

  • Every Student Succeeding Nomination Form (available Aug. 1)

    Check with your region leadership for your region's 2025 ESS nomination deadline. All nominations must be submitted to your region leadership.

    Learn more about the ESS Program.

Statewide Award Recipients

2024 Statewide Award Recipients

ACSA is proud to recognize the 2024 state award honorees. We offer our sincerest congratulation to all of this year's nominees, who without exception
represent the excellence and commitment of California's educators.
Winners will be honored at the Leadership Summit in San Diego the evening of Nov. 15.
Learn more about the event and purchase individual tickets.

2024 Special Awards

Ferd Kiesel Memorial
Distinguished Service Award

The Ferd. Kiesel Memorial Distinguished Service Award is ACSA's highest honor. Each year, we honor one individual who has made a significant contribution to education. The award is named after Ferd. Kiesel, ACSA founding president, a man whose personal commitment to schools and students—and to this association—was exemplary.

Dr. George Manthey
Consultant and Leadership Coach
Region 8

Marcus Foster Memorial Award for
Administrator Excellence

ACSA established the Marcus Foster Memorial Award to honor educators who model the vision of Marcus Foster. Foster took risks to improve educational opportunities. His inclusive management style gave community and staff comfort and confidence. He was creative, and willing to try new ideas to reach out to students. Foster was a skilled manager of change.

Recipients of this award receive a $5,000 grant for a high school senior or seniors.

Shandelyn Williams
Deputy Superintendent, Antelope Valley Union HSD
Region 15

Robert E. Kelly Award

ACSA's Robert E. Kelly Award honors individuals who help advance the high quality of public education and who have made significant contributions on a volunteer basis over the years.

Shelton B. Yip
Region 3

Partners in Educational Excellence

ACSA's Partners in Educational Excellence Award recognizes exemplary school-community partnership programs.

Joe Simitian and County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors Partnership
Region 8

Valuing Diversity Award

ACSA's Valuing Diversity Award recognizes those who further ACSA's mission by promoting diversity and support for all children, parents and staff.

Dr. Paul Gothold
Superintendent, San Diego COE
Region 18

2023 Administrators of the Year

Superintendent of the Year

Grant Bennett
Superintendent, Perris Union HSD
Region 19

Secondary Principal of the Year

Efa Huckaby
Principal, Liberty High School, Liberty Union HSD
Region 6

Middle Grades Principal of the Year

Terri Daniels, Ed.D.
Principal, Folsom Middle School,
Folsom Cordova USD
Region 3

Elementary Principal of the Year

Julie Hatchel
Principal, El Morro Elementary, Laguna Beach USD
Region 17

Central Office Administrator of the Year

Mary O'Neill Grace
Assistant Superintendent, Educational Services, Anaheim ESD
Region 17

Secondary Co-Administrator of the Year

Charlie Troughton
Associate Principal, Corning Union High School, Corning Union HSD
Region 1

Elementary Co-Administrator of the Year

Ali Rabiei
Assistant Principal, Center Street School,
El Segundo USD
Region 14

Classified Leader of the Year

Victoria Webber
Executive Assistant to the Superintendent and Board of Education, Laguna Beach USD
Region 17

Confidential Employee of the Year

Lydia Lugo Dominguez
Executive Assistant to the Superintendent,
Oxnard SD
Region 13

Personnel/Human Resources Administrator
of the Year

Kirk Skorpanich
Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources, Perris Union HSD
Region 19

Adult Education Administrator of the Year

Dr. Wayne Diulio
Director, Torrance Adult School, Torrance USD
Region 14

Career Technical Education Administrator
of the Year

Joseph Bova
Career Technical Education Administrator,
Ventura USD
Region 13

Special Education Administrator of the Year

Holly A. Wade
Director of Special Education Services,
San Mateo Union HSD
Region 5

Superintendent/Principal of the Year

Dr. Amy Alzina
Superintendent/Principal, Cold Spring ESD
Region 13

Business Services Administrator of the Year

Alejandro Flores
Deputy Superintendent of Administrative Services, Rowland USD
Region 15

Student Services Administrator of the Year

Kimberly Wright, Ed.D.
Director of Health & Safety, Palmdale SD
Region 15

Curriculum & Instruction Administrator
of the Year

Patricia Andry-Jennings
Assistant Superintendent, Instructional Services, Napa Valley USD
Region 4

Continuation/Educational Options Administrator of the Year

Gregory Perez
Principal, Santana High School, Rowland USD
Region 15

Professor of Education of the Year

Dr. Regina Tillman
Professor, Antelope Valley College & Principal, Tamarisk Elementary School, Palmdale SD
Region 15

Retired Administrator of the Year

Dr. David Gomez
Region 13

Technology Administrator of the Year

Leslie Wagonseller
Executive Director of Technology and Educational Services, Orcutt Union SD
Region 13

For information on regional award recipients, please find your Region in the dropdown menu or the map on our Regions page.

Download an archive of all past state ACSA Awards recipients.

Awards Program