Golden Apple Selects 3 NLU Alums as Finalists for Teaching Award Prestigious non-profit selected just 32 teachers in Illinois as finalists


Golden Apple, a prestigious Illinois nonprofit which bestows highly-sought-after awards for exemplary teaching, has selected three National Louis University alumni as finalists for its 2019 awards.

For the first time, the organization has expanded the eligibility for its Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Teaching to include all of Illinois. In a highly competitive process, Golden Apple received more than 550 nominations of excellent high school teachers from 71 Illinois counties. The organization asked master teachers, who recognize instructional best practices and professional standards, to narrow the pack down to  32 high school educators selected as finalists for the award. They represent just  6 percent of the nominees.

The finalists who attended National Louis University are:

Elizabeth Farrow, 2010 Master’s in Education in Curriculum & Instruction. She now teaches at Oak Park and River Forest High School as a 9th and 11th grade English teacher.


Greta Kringle, 2013 Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) in Secondary Education. She works as a 10th-12th grade science teacher at Eric Solorio Academy High School, Chicago.


Wendy Louis, 2001 Master’s in Education in Curriculum and Instruction. She teaches 9th-12th grade Special Ed at Putnam County High School, Granville.


“The historic opportunity to bring the recognition of the Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Teaching to all of the schools and teachers in Illinois is thrilling for us and we are delighted to honor these outstanding 32 finalists,” said Alan Mather, President of Golden Apple.

“Golden Apple is honored to recognize outstanding educators whose quality of teaching and passion for growing their students create an environment in which students are inspired to persevere and attain their dreams,” said Alicia Winckler, CEO of Golden Apple.

The Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching honors outstanding teachers for their roles in having lasting, positive effects on students’ lives and builds stronger communities. Teacher finalists demonstrate — in their teaching and results — significant, positive impact on their students’ growth and learning. Fellow educators, students, parents and community members nominate teachers for the awards. Teachers may not self-nominate.

View the 2019 Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching Finalists

All award finalists will be honored on Saturday, February 23 at the Golden Apple Celebration of Excellence to be held at the Tinley Park Convention Center. Event details and tickets are available at

Members of Golden Apple’s selection committee viewed video evidence of instruction and will observe finalists’ teaching in-person in their classrooms – a comprehensive day which includes direct observation of in-classroom teaching accompanied by interviewing finalists’ colleagues, school leaders, students, parents and community members.

The 2019 Golden Apple Award recipients will be notified in the spring with surprise visits at their schools.

The selected award recipients will be featured on a Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) one-hour TV program. The livestream of the show taping will air on Golden Apple’s Facebook page on May 18, 2019 and the edited PBS broadcast will air on multiple future dates.