Sunday, November 8, 2015

San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce's 19th Annual Excellence in Education Awards

Just in time for Super Bowl 50, Joe Montana is giving a keynote speech at the Fairmont as part of the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce's signature event: Legends & Leaders. Also on the agenda is the 19th Annual Excellence in Education Awards where the SJSV chamber will distribute awards for Student, Teacher, and Principal of the year. The event will run from 6-9pm on November 19th and registration is required.

For more information, please read the press release below or head over to

San José, CA—The San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce’s 19th annual Excellence in Education Awards will take place Thursday, Nov. 19 at The Fairmont in San Jose. The awards will be given out at the SJSV Chamber’s annual signature event, Legends & Leaders, and will have keynote speaker four-time Super Bowl Champion Joe Montana.

The 2015 Excellence in Education Awards recipients are:

  • Alejandra Fraume Valencia, Gunderson High School—Student of the Year
  • Christian Rubalcaba, Selma Olinder Elementary School—Teacher of the Year
  • Maria Evans, Washington Elementary School—Principal of the Year

Alejandra was our top choice not only because she is a great student academically-speaking but also because both her peers as well as teachers see her as a leader. She helped her school’s Tennis Team become division champions—the school’s first—and through it all, she made personal sacrifices because of her need to financially help her family (she had to quit tennis because of her job).

Rubalcaba also rose to the top of the nominee list. He is not only an effective leader inside his own classroom, but his leadership and passion extend into his district (impacting curriculum, teaching methods, etc.) as well as the parent community (through his home visits to all his students). He is also an innovator, utilizing technology through his monthly Skype sessions to put his classroom in direct contact with business, education and professional leaders from across the country.

Evans, with her endless dedication to her school community and innovative thinking in terms of collaborative partners to help her better her school set her apart from her peers.

“I’m excited to have been invited to be part of this signature Silicon Valley event,” Joe Montana said. “Our local students and educators are an integral part of our communities and celebrating them through the Legends & Leaders’ Excellence in Education awards is a great way to highlight what’s taking place in our classrooms.”

The Excellence in Education awards first began in 1996 and recognize students, teachers and administrators within the County of Santa Clara that embody the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce’s spirit of acting as a convener, collaborator and champion within their community.

Along with public recognition, the SJSV Chamber also offers recipients educational grants. Over the course of the program’s history, these grants have totaled more than $80,000.

“These students and educators have a direct impact on the region’s economy: as the future workforce, and, in many cases, as our future leaders,” SJSV Chamber President & CEO Matt Mahood said. “As the organization trusted to be the voice of the businesses, many of which have a direct impact on our region’s economic health, we want to recognize these individuals and let the greater community know about their fantastic work.”

The San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit business association representing nearly 1,400 employers and 250,000 employees throughout the greater Silicon Valley. Its mission is to create a strong local economy, provide premier business connections and visibility, represent the interests of business to government, promote the community and initiate political and community action.

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