Education

Joyce L. Evans Earns Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award 

March 15, 2005 - Only two days after her college graduation, Joyce L. Evans became a teacher. That was 30 years ago, and Evans has no regrets about her choice of a profession. “Teaching has been my love from day one, because I touch lives, and I know I make a difference,” she says. “Through the years I have learned so much and have had so many successes. It has definitely been an exciting, wonderful and gratifying destination.”

The journey is by no means over, as Evans discovered today. She became one of only 12 teachers throughout the state to earn a 2005 Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award. Steven F. Leer, Arch Coal president and chief executive officer, made the announcement during a presentation ceremony at the state capitol. He was accompanied by West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin; Secretary of Education and Arts Kay Goodwin; State Schools Superintendent David Stewart; and West Virginia Education Association President Tom Lange.

“Joyce Evans is very deserving of this honor,” says Leer. “There are so many excellent teachers in the state. She is obviously among the ‘best of the best.’ Arch Coal believes classroom teachers, who nurture the love of lifelong education in our children, deserve the respect and admiration of all West Virginia citizens.”

Evans teaches kindergarten students at Monongah Elementary, Monongah, W.Va. “After 30 years, I still love getting up and going to school, taking and teaching classes and being innovative. I have an extreme desire to be the best I can be at whatever I do,” she says. “Through the years I have worked with different age groups, from kindergarten to college, and parents, too. What I bring to any learning experience, along with my knowledge, is compassion and enthusiasm. My past helps me understand poverty and the power of high expectations. I believe that all children can learn and be successful, but must have someone to believe in them.”

Evans earned her bachelor’s degree at Fairmont State University, Fairmont, W.Va.; a master’s degree at West Virginia University (WVU), Morgantown; and additional hours at WVU, Marshall University and the University of Virginia. She continues her education through involvement in a variety of education initiatives. Evans is a Presidential Award for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Teaching recipient and a former Fairmont State Teaching Fellow. She further serves her community through participation in church, civic and other betterment activities.

In addition to recognition, award recipients receive a $2,500 unrestricted cash prize, a distinctive trophy and a classroom plaque. The West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education makes a $1,000 award to each recipient’s school for use with at-risk students.

Arch Coal is supported by the West Virginia Department of Education, the West Virginia Education Association and Speedway in program promotion. Arch Coal’s Teacher Achievement Awards is the longest running, privately sponsored teacher recognition program in the state. Nominations of the teachers are made by the public and selection is made by a blue-ribbon panel of the teachers’ peers – previous recipients of the award.

Arch Coal is the nation’s second largest coal producer. Nearly 2,000 people are employed at Arch’s operations in West Virginia. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACI) and maintains its corporate headquarters in St. Louis, Mo.