Nominations are Open

for this prestigious award that recognizes a teacher for outstanding community service. Students, teachers, principals, and parents may nominate a teacher for consideration. Thoughtfully describe the activities and reasons your nominee should be selected. Nominations will close May 31, 2018.

2017 Finalists

Meet last year's incredible finalists — each of them exemplify the spirit and dedication to community service inspired by Community Coffee’s H. Norman Saurage III.


2017 Winner : John Wondergem

Madisonville Junior High, Madisonville, LA

He has been recognized for creating special programs for children with Autism and Down Syndrome. Special kids find a special family in the Wondergems. John and his wife Julie have fostered 14 children, adopting 5 of them. At the youth group he leads at church he met a 14-year-old student with severe kidney disease. When he was determined to be a match, John did not hesitate to donate a kidney to change this child’s life. Understanding first-hand the need for foster children to have positive life experiences like other kids, four years ago John and his wife opened Royal Family KIDS Camp. They have successfully opened camps in Shreveport, Lake Charles, Baton Rouge, and West Monroe for foster kids 6 through 12. John’s goal is to see a camp in every Foster Care Region across the state.


Jamie Lee Byrd

Zachary High School, Zachary, LA.

In addition to long hours in the classroom and creating opportunities for special needs students outside of the classroom, Jamie has participated with her church’s Haiti Mission since 2013. She travels to Haiti twice a year to share her Special Education skills with local teachers and students. The living conditions are primitive, but the progress being made is a great reward. This kind of sacrifice and commitment to help special needs kids is who Jamie Lee Byrd is as a person, a teacher, and a citizen of the world.


Kim “Lovie” Howell

Stockwell Elementary School, Bossier City, LA

Kim is a highly creative teaching librarian who is involved with many literacy projects and charitable causes. It is her work with the International Dot Day, the Daraja Children’s Choir of Africa, and 410 Bridge that is especially compelling. She connects children in Bossier City with the children of Kenya and Uganda in such an artful and loving way. In Kim’s words, it is the collaboration of a lifetime!


Kelly Taylor Savant

Baton Rouge Center for Visual and Performing Arts, Baton Rouge, LA

If there is one word that describes Kelly, it is “Leadership.” She is a leader in the teaching profession and also organizes teams, sponsors, and events to raise money for a number of worthy causes. She lost her Dad to cancer many years ago, and so far she’s honored him by raising more than $200,000 for the American Cancer Society. Kelly gets everyone involved---her school, her students, families, and the business community to “give something back.”


Amy Horne Williams

Fairfield Elementary Magnet, Shreveport, LA

Since 2012 Ms. Williams has dedicated considerable time to two wonderful causes: Holy Angels Residential Facility in Shreveport that serves individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis. Amy has taken an important leadership role for the annual St. Jude “Miracle on the Red” Gala and successfully raised thousands of dollars from corporate donors. With both causes she has found unique ways to involve her 4th grade students and their families in these efforts to help others in the community.

Note to 2018 Finalists

Finalists for 2018 will be selected by a Dream Teachers evaluation committee and are invited to participate in the annual Cecil J. Picard Educator Excellence Gala to be held July 27, 2018 in Baton Rouge. The 2018 winner will be announced at the Gala and will receive a personal cash award, plus a cash award that will be donated to his/her selected nonprofit cause.