2014 Kansas
Master Teachers

Bonnie Austin

Secondary Instructional Coach
USD 443 Dodge City

John V. Bode

Third-Grade Teacher
USD 497 Lawrence

Lori Gunzelman

Seventh-Grade Math Teacher
USD 385 Andover

Signe Truelove

Special Education Teacher
USD 253 Emporia

Carla Varner

Fifth-Grade Teacher
USD 490 El Dorado

Kathleen Wilhite

Retired Math Teacher
USD 233 Olathe

Maria Worthington

English Language Arts teacher
USD 229 Blue Valley

Kansas Master Teacher Award

2014 Kansas Master Teachers

From left to right: Bonnie Austin, Maria Worthington, John V. Bode, Signe Truelove,
Carla Varner, Lori Gunzelman, and Kathleen Wilhite

Caring about students comes naturally to 2014 Kansas Master Teachers

February 26, 2014

Forging relationships between teachers and individual students is the hallmark of the 2014 class of Kansas Master Teachers.

Seven teachers will be honored April 2 during a day of events at Emporia State University. The teachers are:

  • Bonnie Austin, secondary instructional coach at Dodge City High School;
  • John V. Bode, third-grade teacher at New York Elementary School in Lawrence;
  • Lori Gunzelman, seventh-grade math teacher at Andover Central Middle School;
  • Signe Truelove, special education teacher at Emporia Middle School;
  • Carla Varner, fifth-grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary School;
  • Kathleen Wilhite, retired math teacher at Olathe South High School; and
  • Maria Worthington, English Language Arts teacher at Blue Valley North High School in Overland Park.

Officials at The Teachers College at Emporia State University announced the 2014 class today. A committee that included representatives from Kansas Association of School Boards, Kansas Association of Secondary School Principals, Kansas Association of Elementary School Principals, Kansas Parent Teacher Association, Kansas National Education Association, United School Administrators, Kappa Delta Pi, the 2013 Master Teacher class, National Teachers Hall of Fame and Center for Innovative School Leadership selected the recipients.

The seven teachers will be honored on Master Teacher Day, April 2. On that day, the teachers will present a seminar, “Master Teachers: Reflecting Excellence,” at 2:30 p.m. in the W.S. and E.C. Jones Conference Center. Then they will be honored during a social hour at 5:15 p.m. in Webb Hall Lobby of Emporia State’s Memorial Union followed by the dinner awards program at 6:30 p.m. in Webb Hall.

Emporia State University established the Kansas Master Teacher awards in 1954. The awards are presented annually to teachers who have served the profession long and well and who also typify the outstanding qualities of earnest and conscientious teachers.

Since 1980, Bank of America has pledged more than $100,000 to permanently endow the Kansas Master Teacher awards. In 1984, the Black family of Broken Bow, Okla., established an endowed chair for Kansas Master Teachers. The fund provides a stipend to bring two Master Teachers to ESU for part of a semester. During this time, the teachers present to classes of education students.

2014 Kansas Master Teacher Awards Ceremony


2014 Kansas Master Teacher Roundtable