Each year, the Executive Board of the New York State English Council recognizes a member of the council for giving unconditionally to the membership and the students of New York State.
The Executive Board of the New York State English Council has chosen Christine Zandstra for the 2023 Fellow Award. We honor Christine for her dedication to education and for her outstanding service to the Council.
Christine has always been the type of educator that puts her students first. She has taught remedial courses at Dutchess Community College, and for the last 20 years has taught both middle and high school level classes for the Wappingers Central School District. Her desire to constantly improve her practice through professional development and personal learning enables her to always provide her students with an engaging classroom environment. She is passionate about growing strong readers, and works tirelessly to find texts that will connect with her students.
She also makes it a priority to grow her own skills, and as a result she has been a Nationally Board Certified Teacher since 2011. Christine shares what she has learned with her colleagues by facilitating workshops through the Hudson Valley Writing Project, Mid-Hudson Teachers Center, and presenting at local, state, and national conferences. In addition, she works to support the next generation of English educators by serving as an adjunct at SUNY New Paltz.
Christine served on the NYSEC Executive Board for a decade in several capacities: NYSCEA Liaison, Treasurer, Awards Coordinator, and most notably as the President in 2015. The impact of her work with the organization both in front and behind the scenes is still felt today.
Christine is the best kind of leader – the kind who doesn’t want to be one, the kind who doesn’t realize her magical powers, the kind who prefers to see others shine, the kind who leads from the front and guides from behind, who wants to get her hands dirty, who never feigns ignorance or innocence in the face of a task or challenge, who figures things out on her own and gets things done, who never wants to stop learning or reading or growing or attending to her personal devotion to professional development. We on the NYSEC Board thank Christine for her service to the Board and to educators throughout the State.