Alabama’s Teacher of the Year will travel the state in a new car during her reign thanks to Alfa Insurance and the Alabama Farmers Federation.
Alison Grizzle, a math teacher at P.D. Jackson Olin High School in Birmingham, received the car during a ceremony at the Alfa home office in Montgomery May 9.
“Being named Alabama’s Teacher of the Year is such an honor,” said Grizzle, who will represent more than 50,000 state educators when she competes for title of National Teacher of the Year. “In my field, I’m not accustomed to being the star of the show. The greatest reward I receive comes at the end of the school year when students receive their graduation exam results and are ecstatic to see the word ‘pass’ by the mathematics section. It’s that day I see the fruits of my labor.”
â€¨Alfa President Jimmy Parnell, who also serves as president of the Alabama Farmers Federation, presented Grizzle the keys to a 2013 Chevrolet Impala as part of her award for being named the state’s top teacher. He said few people have the ability to influence lives the way teachers do.
“Dr. Grizzle will have the opportunity to inspire thousands of teachers, parents and community leaders as an ambassador for education during the coming year,” Parnell said. “Alfa and the Alabama Farmers Federation appreciate the important role she and all teachers play in the lives of our children.”
Parnell also announced the insurance for the Teacher of the Year car would be paid for by the Alabama Farmers Federation.
State Superintendent of Education Dr. Thomas R. Bice announced Alabama’s Teacher of the Year at a May 8 ceremony honoring the final four candidates for the award. He praised Alfa’s support of the Teacher of the Year Program, noting this marks the 17th year the company presented an automobile to the state’s top teacher.
“Alfa’s contribution of the use of a car for a year is a tremendous gift to our Teacher of the Year as she travels our state promoting public education,” Bice said. “Dr. Grizzle embodies all the qualities I think of when I use the term teacher. She chose a career path of service to those most in need and continues to make a difference in the lives of students each and every day.”
Grizzle has taught math in Birmingham City Schools since 1999. She said she chose to teach in high-needs schools because urban districts often have difficulty attaining and retaining good teachers.
A graduate of Denison University with degrees in mathematics and English, Grizzle is a National Board Certified teacher and earned her doctorate degree at Walden University. She will spend the majority of the year serving as a spokesperson for education, presenting workshops, speaking to groups and representing education and the teaching profession.