The San Diego State athletic department honored four of the San Diego County Teachers of the Year at half-time of the February 23 Aztec men's basketball victory over BYU, in front of the largest Cox Arena crowd of the season.
"We're happy to celebrate our continuing partnership with the San Diego County Office of Education and the teachers and students throughout San Diego County," said associate athletic director Sean Briner. "We're honored to have the Teachers of the Year as our guests, and it's gratifying to see the great reception they received."
The four Teachers of the Year honored at center court were Vicki Pilling of Solana Santa Fe School in the Solana Beach School District; Andee Aceves of San Altos School in the Lemon Grove School District; Chris Stanley of Carlton Hills School in the Santee School District; and Tammy Reina, of the East Mesa Juvenile Detention Facility. The fifth County Teacher of the Year, Freddie Chavarria of Jefferson Middle School in Oceanside Unified School District, was ill and unable to attend.
Joining the Teachers of the Year on the court were SDSU Athletic Director Jeff Schemmel, Drew Schlosberg of the San Diego Union-Tribune, County Superintendent of Schools Randy Ward, and Ric Hovda, Dean of the College of Education at SDSU. Hovda presented each of the teachers with a gift, as did Schemmel.
Ward was particularly animated on the court, exhorting the crowd of nearly 10,000 to cheer for the teachers. They did, and the raucous applause continued through the end of the Aztecs' 69-65 victory.