CCC&Y Spotlight — 2024 Coconino County Teacher of the Year Winners Announced

Apr 30, 2024 | CCC&Y Info & Events

Jeremiah Smith of Coconino High School, with the confetti help of his family, celebrates receiving the 2024 Teacher of the Year Award on April 25, 2024. Photos by Frank X. Moraga. SEE MORE PHOTOS BELOW

Also see — Arizona Daily Sun — Coconino County recognizes Teacher of the Year winners

By Coconino County

FLAGSTAFF — Under the bright lights of recognition and applause, the 2024 Coconino County Teacher of the Year Awards Ceremony was a resounding success, honoring educators whose dedication and innovation illuminate the path to excellence in education.

Coconino County Superintendent of Schools Cheryl Mango-Paget proudly announces the recipients of the 2024 awards:

  • Teacher of the Year: Jeremiah Smith of Coconino High School
  • Rookie Teacher of the Year: Emily Cartwright of Eva Marshall Magnet Elementary School
  • Lifetime Achievement Awardees: Jeanne Crookston of Fredonia Elementary School District and Dr. Rick McEnaney of Flagstaff High School

The ceremony, held at the High Country Conference Center on Thursday, April 25, 2024, gathered educators, administrators, and community members to celebrate the remarkable achievements of these outstanding educators.

Jeremiah Smith, renowned for his passionate teaching of United States History and leadership in Coconino High School’s Link Crew program, exemplifies dedication beyond the classroom. His commitment extends to coaching student athletes and serving as Assistant Athletic Director, embodying the spirit of mentorship and community engagement.

Emily Cartwright’s tireless advocacy for inclusive education at Eva Marshall Magnet Elementary School shines brightly. Focused on students with intellectual disabilities, Emily fosters empathy and understanding, creating a nurturing environment where every child feels valued and supported.

Jeanne Crookston, with over two decades of teaching experience at Fredonia Elementary School, stands as a beacon of inspiration. Her innovative contributions have propelled educational excellence forward, enriching the lives of countless students and shaping the future of education.

Dr. Rick McEnaney’s 37-year dedication to shaping young minds at Flagstaff High School is a testament to his unwavering passion for teaching. Through music education, he instills a love for learning that transcends the classroom, leaving an indelible mark on generations of students.

The Coconino County Teacher of the Year event recognizes the outstanding contributions of state-accredited teachers in grades Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade. This year, 36 teachers were nominated for the Teacher of the Year category, and 12 rookie teachers were nominated for the Rookie Teacher of the Year category. The event also acknowledges Ambassadors for Excellence (runners-up) who exhibit exceptional dedication to their craft.

Sponsorship from businesses and community members makes this event possible, and we extend our deepest gratitude to our Lead Recognition sponsor and Teacher of the Year Sponsor, Findlay Toyota, as well as Rookie Teacher of the Year Sponsor APS, and Lifetime Achievement Award Sponsor Coconino County Board of Supervisors. We also acknowledge the contributions of our Honor Society level and above sponsors, including NARBHA, Stone Canyon Media, Coconino Community College, NAU College of Education, and CAVIAT.

For more information and event photos, please contact Michelle Despain, program coordinator for the Coconino County Superintendent of Schools office, at 928-679-8070 or via email at

To view the complete list of sponsors, visit Coconino County Teacher of the Year   (