Governor Mills, Commissioner Makin Help Celebrate 2022 Maine County Teachers of the Year at Annual Tailgate Gala

The 2022 County Teachers of the Year and the recently named 2023 Maine Teacher of the Year Matt Bernstein were celebrated recently at the 2022 Teacher of the Year Tailgate Gala. The Gala is an annual celebration of the program honoring the hard work and dedication of these teachers and the teaching profession.

The event was held outdoors under a tent at Geiger, in Lewiston, a long-time supporter of the Maine Teacher of the Year (TOY) Program. A delicious lunch was served by students from the Lewiston Regional Technical Center’s The Green Ladle Food Truck, a part of the Center’s Culinary programing.

Present and legacy State and County Teachers of the Year, along with their families, friends, colleagues, and administrators traveled from across Maine to gather together on a sunny day to celebrate and honor the innovation, dedication, excellence, and hard work of these amazing educators.

Images with the logo ‘Everyone’s Story Includes a Teacher’ is the property of the Arizona Educational Foundation and used with permission.

In addition to an awards ceremony that honored the 2022 County Teachers of the Year, the event featured remarks from Educate Maine Executive Director Jason Judd, 2022 Maine TOY Kelsey Stoyanova, Governor of Maine Janet T. Mills, Education Commissioner Pender Makin, and 2023 TOY Matt Bernstein. Program sponsors were also present, many offering words of appreciation and admiration to the educators in the audience, stressing the importance of education.

Another annual tradition of the Teacher of the Year Gala is for the Maine Secretary of State to provide a specialty license plate to the Teacher of the Year. We were honored to host Secretary of State Shenna Bellows who presented Bernstein with the license plate this year.

The Maine Department of Education along with its dedicated Maine TOY Program partners Educate Maine, the Maine State Board of Education, and the Maine County and State Teacher of the Year Association would like to extend a sincere dept of gratitude to the program’s funders and sponsors: Bangor Savings Bank, Dead River Company, Geiger, Maine State Lottery, Hannaford, Unum, and the Silvernail Family.

The Maine Teacher of the Year program is administered by Educate Maine, a business-led education advocacy organization, in partnership with the Maine Department of Education, the Maine State Board of Education, and the Maine County and State Teachers and County of the Year Association (MCSTOYA). To learn more about the Maine Teacher of the Year Program visit

2022 County Teachers of the Year