Russellville native wins teacher of the year honors

By Staff
Rebecca James, Franklin County Times
Chrissy Williams Cooper, formerly of Russellville, was recently awarded the "Tennessee Education Association's Distinguished Classroom Teacher of the Year" award for the 2006-2007 school year.
Cooper will be honored in Nashville on May 11 where several special events have been planned in her honor, including an awards ceremony luncheon, and an Awards Gala to end the night.
Cooper was nominated for by the Hamilton County Education Association, which also named her their "Distinguished Classroom Teacher of the Year" before nominating her for the state's highest award for teachers. The Hamilton County Education Association represents more than 80 schools in the Hamilton County System. Each local association across the state sent in their nominees for the title.
"I was absolutely shocked when I found out that I won, and I'm still in shock," Cooper said.
"There are a lot of good teachers in this state, and for me to be singled out like this was amazing."
Chrissy Williams Cooper, daughter of Bill and Sharon Williams, graduated from Russellville High School in 1979 where she was voted Most Likely to Succeed by her senior class.
She graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.S. in Secondary Education and History/Political Science from the University of North Alabama in 1982 where she won numerous awards and honors.
She received her Master's Degree in Secondary Education/History/Political Science from the University of Alabama in 1988, where she graduated Suma Cum Laude.
Cooper has taught middle and high school social studies for 20 years.
She taught for 11 years at Scottsboro Junior High School, where she was named Alabama's Social Studies Teacher of the Year in 1994.
She currently teaches at Sequoyah High School in Chattanooga, Tenn., where the senior class named her their most influential teacher.
She is married to Niles Cooper, who is also from Russellville, and they have one son, Christopher, who is a graduating senior this year.
"The teachers I had at Russellville were my role models. Because of them, I decided to become a teacher," Cooper said.
" I love my job. I love it as much now as the day I started, and to be awarded for doing something that you love is the icing on the cake."

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