Dec 16, 2019 by


Michael F. Shaughnessy

Since 2005, we endeavor to acknowledge some individuals who have made great contributions to education. This year we are proud to recognize and acknowledge a number of scholars, writers, theoreticians and other researchers who have contributed to the field of education.

Every year, we pause at this time to reflect on certain individuals who, like Upton Sinclair, have made an impact on either education or their chosen field of endeavor. Some of the individuals below have been nominated by others and others are simply outstanding in their chosen field of endeavor.

Heather Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, a contributing editor of City Journal, and a New York Times bestselling author. She is a recipient of the 2005 Bradley Prize. Mac Donald’s work at City Journal has covered a range of topics, including higher education, immigration, policing, homelessness and homeless advocacy, criminal-justice reform, and race relations.

Her writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, The New Republic, and The New Criterion. Mac Donald’s newest book, The Diversity Delusion: How Race and Gender Pandering Corrupt the University and Undermine Our Culture (2018), argues that toxic ideas first spread by higher education have undermined humanistic values, fueled intolerance, and widened divisions in our larger culture (taken from her web page).

Heather’s work has consistently been focused and on target and she does not shy away from difficult topics that are either relevant or indirectly relevant to education, higher education, and society.

Don Winn is an author, advocate, and caring competent, compassionate individual whose work has impacted teachers, reading specialists and others nationally. Don write for an about learning disabilities in reading and dyslexia and has won various awards that readily acknowledge his skills and expertise and concern about children with reading difficulties and those who work with them. Don has done more than write books- he has provided a plethora of materials to assist parents enhance the vocabulary growth and development of their children and to enhance pre-literacy skills. More information about him can be accessed at “ www.donwinn.com

Jane Robbins has been concerned about the security of student data, and what is done what that data and has written extensively about confidentiality, student concerns and related issues such as Common Core. Here is a brief description from her web site:

Jane Robbins is an attorney and a senior fellow with the American Principles Project in Washington, DC. In that position she has crafted federal and state legislation designed to restore the constitutional autonomy of states and parents in education policy, and to protect the rights of religious freedom and conscience. Her essays on these topics have been published in various print and online media. With Emmett McGroarty she co-authored the APP/Pioneer Institute report, Controlling Education from the Top: Why Common Core Is Bad for America. She has written numerous articles about the problems with Common Core and has testified about the issue before the legislatures of nine states. She is a graduate of Clemson University and the Harvard Law School. (Nominated by Will Fitzhugh of The Concord Review).

Larry Lipsitz (posthumously) For many, many years, Larry Lipsitz edited Educational Technology: The Magazine for managers of change in Education. For many, many years, Larry brought together the thinking of the leading minds across America and across the world to try to keep pace with the educational technology changes that were sweeping the Internet. The number of articles he edited and published must run into the thousands and the impact of this “magazine” is incalculable. Educational Technology published since 1961 always featured the cutting edge technology, the cutting edge thinkers and the main innovations in the field. Sadly, Larry left us all too soon, but his impact will be felt, his work will live on- and the impact of his journal cannot be measured by any criteria. Larry’s only error was not calling his “magazine” a true journal- since people in administration are often clueless as to the impact factor of his “magazine” and the impact of the articles that he promoted and the wide impact he had on the field. One can talk about “impact factor” but the impact that Larry has made on the field cannot be calculated.

Dr. Jay W. Friedman is highly regarded individual, advocate and public health professional as well as a dentist and he is recipient to many awards within the dental field. We believe he is worthy of any award that magnifies his dedication to public health and the selfless work he has done in various parts of the world for research and educational progress.

For a more extensive review of his life and his work, interested dentists, dental hygienists and policy advocates are referred to the following link:

There are many “unsung heroes“ out there in the world who just go about their daily business of helping others and educating others. Dr. Jay W. Friedman is one of those (nominated by Dianne Petrale).

Ugur Sak – is currently at the Andolu University in Turkey where he teaches and impacts that part of the world in terms of research, scholarly activity and investigation into talent, giftedness and creativity. He is a major figure in that part of the world and mentors and encourages scholars in that section of the world and his interviews and articles have appeared in journals world- wide. He has just completed an intelligence test of his own and is involved in the standardization process. His involvement and mentoring have impacted individuals and organizations around the globe.

Glen Taylor is the CEO & Co-Founder of WAY American School. WAY American School is a creative and innovative educational system of learning that helps make every child a hero. It prepares youth for their future and not our past with a dynamic project based learning platform.

Before he co-founded WAY American School, Glen was a teacher, principal, athletic directly, and Executive Director of Innovation, State, and Federal Programs. Quite honestly, he is one of the most dynamic educators I met while serving as Michigan’s state superintendent of schools from 2001 – 2005.

I could list all his educational credentials and accolades he has received in his young career but they are tiny when juxtaposed to the integrity, human decency, and commitment he brings to his daily routine. The highest compliment I pay to anyone is to say they are a good person. Glen Taylor is a good man.

When many local schools were making excuses why they could not accept free teachers from China to teach in their district, Glen embraced the idea and saw it as an opportunity to enhance teaching and learning for his educationally starved students in a working class neighborhood. In the early days of blended and e-learning when some were talking about the educational possibilities, Glen developed an e-learning platform that enabled hundreds of former dropouts to drop back in and complete their high school diploma.

When he saw traditional school districts kicking students out of school in underserved communities, he created charter schools to meet their social, emotional, and educational needs. He also partners with traditional public and private schools to enhance their educational opportunities for many forgotten young people, giving them hope and opportunity.

Glen has also partnered with schools, teachers, and students internationally in Brazil, China, and the United Kingdom. He is constantly looking for ways to prepare students for their future in a hyper-competitive, disruptive, and technologically-driven global economy where ideas and jobs can and do move around the world effortlessly.

Mr. Taylor has been recognized nationally and internationally for his leadership in servicing teens in Michigan. He is a member of the Consensus for Change Think Tank, which is comprised of legislative, educational, and business leaders from around the state of Michigan. He regularly presents at regional, national and international conferences. He hosts various professional groups comprised of teachers, administrators, and regional consultants about new educational innovations.

Mr. Taylor has actively served as a member of the State Executive Board Committee for the Michigan Association of State and Federal Program Specialists since 2004. He has also chaired the District Vision Committee responsible for district strategic planning.

Note: Glen Taylor was nominated by Tom Watkins and Tom Watkins wrote the about information, detailing Glen’s accomplishments. We appreciate Tom’s involvement and contributions to www.educationViews.org

Grant Wiggins ( posthumously) (1950–2015) was the president of Authentic Education in Hopewell, New Jersey, a consulting, research, and publishing organization.

Wiggins consulted with schools, districts, and state education departments on a variety of reform matters, organized conferences and workshops, and developed print materials and web resources on curricular change.

For 20 years, Wiggins worked on some of the most influential reform initiatives in the country, including Vermont’s portfolio system and Ted Sizer’s Coalition of Essential Schools. He established statewide consortia devoted to assessment reform for North Carolina and headed standards clarification work for the state education departments in Delaware, New Jersey, and Mississippi.

He earned a doctorate in education from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree from St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland. (the above is taken from an ASCD website-

http://www.ascd.org/Publications/ascd-authors/grant-wiggins.aspx and

readers are encouraged to learn more about his thinking, his books and his clarity of thought from his writings and his professional development workshops) .

Previous Upton Sinclair Award Winners:

2005: Gerald Bracey, Nicholas Colangelo, Elaine Garan, Martin Haberman, Jonathan Kozol, Peter and Pam Wright, Reid Lyon;

2006: John Stossel, Jan and Bob Davidson, Peyton Wolcott, Fred Baughman, M.D., Will Fitzhugh, Joel Turtel, Bernard Gassaway, Ned Davis, Her Highness Sheikah Mozah Bint Nasser Al Missned, “All the Children of the World”;

2007: Sean Hannity, Don Meyer, Ron Clark, Frank Wang, Harry and Rosemary Wong, Tracey McGrady, Dr. Eldo W. Bergman, Queen Rania of Jordan, Celeste Roseberry-McKibbin, Ph.D., G. Gbaanador, MD, FACS, FICS, Bill Cecil,  Here’s to the Upton School Principals of America;

2008: Harold V. House, Kathleen Chamberlain, Dee Alpert, Kevin Donnelly, Dona Matthews, Ph.D., Aisha Ussery, Collin Hannaford, Andrew Rotherham, Jim Zellmer., JoAnn Collins;

2009: E.D. Hirsch, Jay Mathews, John Goodlad, Billy Reagan, Geoffrey Canada, Fredrick Hess, Jay Hartling;

2010: Tom Watkins, Marlena Vaughn, Susan Ohanian, Dr. Marion Blank, Neal McCluskey, Ernest Boyer (Posthumously), Mr. Pierre Fignole, Chris Woodhead, Diane Ravitch, Ph.D.

2011: C. M. Rubin, Tavis Smiley, Joe Nathan, Ann Thompson, James Webb, Kiernan Egan, Professor Hani Q. Khoury

2012: Sandy Hook Elementary School of Newtown, CT , individuals, who gave their lives for their pupils and in the service of education individuals, who gave their lives for their pupils and in the service of education. First responders for their courage and on-going assistance in the little town where Sandy Hook Elementary School of Newtown, CT , took a worldwide human race to its knees. Bless Be the Tie That Binds Our Hearts.

2013: Donna Garner, William Korach, Alan Singer, Bror Saxberg, Rick Hess, Paul Horton, Antoinette Tuff, Michael Nuccitelli, Psy.D., Dr. Valerie Hill-Jackson

2014: Terry Grier, Paul E. Peterson, First Lady Barbara Bush, Yong Zhao, Christopher Arnold and Tracey Baker, Karen Nave, James Webb, Alice Linahan, Robert Nasson

2015: Dr. Kevin Donnelly, Robert Pondiscio, George Leef, Monty Neill, Bob Schaeffer, Lisa Guisbond, David Mirabella, Michael Petrilli, Peter Greene, Jennifer Waddell, PhD, Gus Jacob, Michael Harris, Lynn Wade, Nicholas D. Hartlep, Alan Hooker

2016: Ben Carson, Elie Wiesel, Jennifer Buckingham, Deborah Confredo, Dr Hani Q. Khoury, Professor Theodore Zeldin, Anna Ulrich, Stephen Colbert, The Unknown Teacher.

2017: Carol J. Carter, Mike Hess, Marion Brady, Joan Freeman, Scholastic Books, The International Literacy Association, The Ayn Rand Institute, The American Enterprise Institute, The Thomas B. Fordham Institute, Lastly, we need to recognize those teachers and students who have lost their lives due to violence over the past few years.

2018: Delia Stafford, Monty McNeil, Wilfrey McClay, Bruce Urhmacher, Jane Robbins, Stan Lee (posthumously), James Webb (posthumously), Maurice Fisher (posthumously)

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