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First Round Winners of National Thank America’s Teachers Initiative Announced by Farmers Insurance

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Total of $150,000 in Classroom Grants Awarded to 60 Teachers Across America to Drive Positive Change in Nation’s Classrooms

Los Angeles, Calif. (April 14, 2015) – Farmers Insurance, one of the nation’s largest multiline insurers, announced the first round of 60 winning teachers of its Thank America’s Teachers $2,500 educational grant program. Farmers, inspired by the great work done by teachers every day, created the Thank America’s Teachers initiative, to say thank you to teachers and give away more than $1,000,000 in educational grants in 2015.
Launched at the 2015 Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego, California, with the help of PGA TOUR players Rickie Fowler and Charley Hoffman, Thank America’s Teachers features an iconic yellow school bus that is traveling coast-to-coast delivering opportunities to say thank you to teachers who give their time, talent and knowledge to ensure that our nation’s children become smarter and better prepared for the future.
Through Thank America’s Teachers, Farmers will give away more than $1,000,000 to educators in 2015 and the public will help determine who receives the grants at Farmers will award 180 grants valued at $2,500 throughout the year. There will be a total of three rounds of 60 winners announced and teachers are urged to submit proposals for the final two rounds. In addition, six Dream Big Teacher Challenge grants of $100,000 each will be awarded to help support innovative educational programs in communities across the country.
“The 60 teachers receiving these Thank America’s Teachers classroom grants exemplify the types of positive and dedicated educators that make lasting impressions on the lives of students across the country,” said Kelly LaMar, managing lead of Thank America's Teachers at Farmers Insurance. “Farmers is proud to be able to provide these teachers with the funds necessary to help advance education in their classrooms.”
Whether online at or at stops in communities across the country, if a person has the email address of the teacher they wish to thank, their thank you will be delivered to that teacher in the form of an electronic postcard. It’s a simple and fun way to let teachers know of the difference they make or made in the lives of their students.
Ways the public can join the effort to Thank America’s Teachers:
Go to to thank a teacher and vote for a teacher’s proposal
Once thanked, teachers can visit to submit a proposal for a $2,500 grant and for one of six $100,000 grants as part of the Dream Big Teacher Challenge
Among the grant winners:
  • Lanan Kendall teaches at Grace Brethren Elementary School in Simi Valley, California. She plans to purchase equipment to help develop a curriculum to teach students about viable options for cultivating a sustainable garden. The overall goal is to help her school establish an on-going seasonal garden that will lend a variety of opportunities for students to learn about science, social studies, math, and language arts outside of the classroom, in a nontraditional setting.

  • Lauren Valentine teaches at Aslup Elementary School in Commerce City, Colorado. The school recently adopted a program to help students with autism manage and foster positive behavioral, academic and communication skills. With the grant funds, Ms. Valentine plans to pilot an evidence based peer mediated instruction and intervention program to help her students push through their comfort zones.

  • Alyssa Henley teaches 8th grade at Dewey Public Schools in Dewey, Oklahoma. To ensure that her students pursue their passions, Ms. Henley will purchase two computers to allow them to work on individual research projects and engage in activities such as investigating different cultures around the globe, develop computer programs through online coding courses, create education-based movies and more.

  • Thomas Parker teaches at Woodbridge High School in Woodbridge, New Jersey, and is associated with the school’s new JROTC program. With the grant funds from Farmers, Mr. Parker will help the JROTC students purchase uniforms, shoes, school desks and field trips to educational and historical museums. The uniforms will allow student-cadets to attend the "Junior Cadet Leadership Challenge" event, which promotes esprit de corps, teamwork, and self-confidence.

  • Below is a complete list of winners (note to editors, details of the winning proposals and access to the winning teachers are available by contacting Farmers Media Relations representatives listed above):

Farmers Insurance is working in partnership with, a national non-profit, to help teachers acquire the supplies and equipment they have requested in their proposals.

For more information about upcoming bus stops or the initiative, please visit: