Return to Headlines

Nine JPS Educators Honored as Outstanding Educators by Ask for More Jackson

October 17, 2023

Ask for More Jackson proudly recognized nine exceptional JPS educators with the 2023 Outstanding Educator Awards. They were nominated by their school principals. These teachers were celebrated for their remarkable ability to inspire hope, kindle imagination, and cultivate a love for learning. The ceremony took place on Thursday, October 5 at the Thad Cochran Center within the Jackson Medical Mall, attended by families, friends, principals, and District leaders. In addition to a certificate and a personalized paperweight, each recipient received a monetary gift, generously provided by an anonymous donor through the Outstanding Educator Awards Fund of the Community Foundation for Mississippi. These funds can be utilized for professional development or personal pursuits. 
Jackson Public Schools Ask for More Jackson Outstanding Educators 2023


Here are the esteemed Outstanding Educator honorees: 

Nekita King-Adams - Raines Elementary 

Experience: 8 years  

Education: Bachelor of Education  

Notable: Teacher of the Month for February 2023 and volunteer for Habitat for Humanity and Ameri-Corps  


Verna Edmond - Clausell Elementary  

Experience: 16 years  

Education: Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Science in elementary education   

Notable: Clausell’s Teacher of the Year for 2022-2023  


Triana Davis - Dawson Elementary  

Experience: 13 years  

Education: Bachelor of Science in elementary education  

Notable: Metro Jackson Teacher of the Year, Dawson Teacher of the Year  


Dr. Mavis Dawson - Green Elementary  

Experience: 18 years  

Education: Bachelor of Science, Master's in education administration and supervision (K-12), Doctorate in education  

Notable: Volunteer for 100 Black Men of Jackson, member of Grandparents Do Matter Organization, and founder of Created for You Tutorial Services


Laquinta Hobson - Lake Elementary  

Experience: 9 years  

Education: Bachelor’s degree in Childcare Family Education, Master’s in Early Childhood, Specialist in Psychometry  

Notable: Tutor for scholars in grades K-2 and the Summer Reading Program  


Tonya Hughes - Wingfield High 

Experience: 29 years 

Education: Bachelor of Science in social sciences, Master of Arts in teaching 

Notable: Recognized as Master Economics Teacher, Teacher of the Month at Wingfield High School, and received numerous awards for student growth and afterschool activities  


Shondra Byars-Smith - Lanier Junior/Senior High 

Experience: 20+ years  

Education: Master’s in educational administration and supervision, Master of Science   

Notable: Lead exceptional education teacher and recipient of the American Cancer Society’s Silver Champion Award  


Alesia White - Van Winkle Elementary  

Experience: 10 years  

Education: Bachelor's in child and family studies, Master’s in Early Childhood Education  

Notable: JPS Rock Star Award recipient in December 2021  


Shimacha Williams - Galloway Elementary  

Experience: 13 years  

Education: Master of Arts, Bachelor of Science   

Notable: Member of the National Association of Gifted Children, Ask for More Arts afterschool and summer school teacher  


Jackson Public Schools Ask for More Jackson Outstanding Educators 2023 Jackson Public Schools Ask for More Jackson Outstanding Educators 2023 Jackson Public Schools Ask for More Jackson Outstanding Educators 2023


“Thank you to the Community Foundation of Mississippi for supporting us. Educators are important, especially here in the City of Jackson,” said Dr. William Merritt, JPS Chief of Staff. “I applaud each of you for your commitment to academic excellence. These educators embody the spirit of excellence, dedication, and passion in the field of education, and are truly deserving of the Outstanding Educator Awards. They continue to inspire and shape the minds of future generations, leaving an indelible mark on their students and the community.” 


Related Link: