January 5, 2022


Indianapolis Host Committee and College Football Playoff Foundation to celebrate teachers from across the country and Indiana during CFP national championship weekend.

The 2022 Indianapolis Host Committee and the College Football Playoff (CFP) Foundation continue their efforts to support Indiana teachers through legacy initiatives by announcing the 18 Indiana Teachers of the Year. These 18 teachers, nominated by their peers and communities, will join 56 state teachers of the year to participate in the Teacher of the Year Championship Experience, presented by Eckrich, developed by the CFP Foundation in coordination with the Council of Chief State School Officers. 

“Honoring teachers is one of the many ways that the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship positively impacts our community,” said Mark Howell, chairman of the Indianapolis Host Committee. “We invite teachers and all of their biggest fans to join us in celebrating their hard work at the events surrounding National Championship weekend.”

Meet the 18 Indiana Teachers of the Year:

  • Nick Altman, Huntington North High School, Huntington
  • Michael Brooks, Avon Community School Corporation, Avon
  • Claire Brown, Mayflower Mill Elementary School, Lafayette
  • Lisa Clegg, Northrop High School, Fort Wayne
  • Robert DeRuntz, Chesterton High School, Chesterton
  • Kristen Distler, Fall Creek Junior High, Fishers
  • Samantha Griffith, Christel House DORS West, Indianapolis
  • Ashley Hogan, Tindley Summit Academy, Indianapolis
  • Kevin Melrose, Northwest Community Middle School, Indianapolis 
  • Joseph Oakes, Borden Jr/Sr High School, Borden
  • Cris Petro, Liberty Intermediate School, Chesterton
  • Jennifer Pollitt, Timothy Ball Elementary School, Crown Point
  • Mindy Summers, Central Middle School, Columbus
  • Jakeila “Moe” Sutton, William H. Harrison High School, Evansville
  • Darcy Talbot, Crestdale Elementary School, Richmond
  • Jeremy Walker, Crown Point High School, Crown Point
  • Jen Yoder, Goshen High School, Goshen
  • Deanne Wideman, McKinley Alternative School, Kokomo

During the weekend leading up to the national championship game, the Indiana teachers will enjoy a four-night stay in downtown Indianapolis. They will join the 56 other state teachers of the year from the Teacher of the Year program as honored guests at CFP Foundation events, including the Extra Yard 5K and Taste of the Championship. As the pinnacle of the weekend, the teachers are recognized on-field at the national championship game in celebration of their superb effort and dedication to the teaching profession.

All teachers will be celebrated throughout the week and CFP National Championship weekend through the following initiatives:

  • Arts Council of Indianapolis Partnership: The host committee partnered with the Indy Arts Council to showcase physical and digital art from Indiana’s art educators. Art was submitted to the Indy Arts Council and reviewed by the Rewards & Recognition committee. The finalists’ art will be displayed at the Indianapolis International Airport KIND Gallery and Artsgarden from December 2021 through June 2022. Work will also be highlighted during the Welcome Reception happening on Friday, January 7 at the Artsgarden.
  • 2022 Extra Yard for Teachers Summit: On Saturday, January 8, the 2022 Extra Yard for Teachers Summit powered by Get Your Teach On will take place at the NCAA Hall of Champions and Conference Center The Extra Yard for Teachers Summit is the College Football Playoff Foundation’s annual flagship event designed to empower and inspire educators with guest speakers, giveaways, networking experiences and professional development during the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship weekend. Attendees will also enjoy food, music, drink, giveaways and a post-summit reception. Indiana educators are invited to attend virtually by registering through the Indiana Learning Lab for free access. Educators across the country can join with a virtual all-access pass for $39. 
  • Extra Yard for Teachers Day: Sunday, January 9, 2022 marks the first Extra Yard for Teachers Day as proclaimed by the Mayor of Indianapolis. On this day, from 10:30 am – 4pm, teachers will be honored in the Championship Campus footprint. Multiple Indianapolis businesses are joining in celebrating Indiana teachers by offering prizes and perks to commemorate the day. An area to the right of the Georgia Street Cube entrance of the Indiana Convention Center will be designated as a Teacher HQ, where teachers can check-in with their teacher ID to receive information on all the different perks available and also claim prizes, including 3 pairs of 2022 CFP National Championship tickets. The first 1,000 teachers that check-in at the Teacher HQ will receive a swag bag of items. Fans visiting will also have the opportunity to win prizes and celebrate the teachers in their lives at the Teacher HQ. Some of the businesses participating in Extra Yard for Teacher Day include: 
    • Offering Perks: Cunningham Restaurant Group, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Brewlink Brewing, White River State Park, Rathskeller, Ruth’s Chris, Silver in the City, The Rathskeller, and others. 
    • Offering Prizes: Indianapolis Colts, City Market, Sun King Brewing, The Indianapolis Propylaeum, DonorsChoose, Guggman Haus Brewing, Hot Box Pizza, Rise N Roll, Tavern on South, Fowling Warehouse Indy, Chick-fil-A, and others.
  • Extra Yard 5K: Teachers receive a discounted entry of $10 to participate in the Extra Yard 5K on Sunday, January 9. The event will include an appearance by Ace the Apple, the CFP Foundation’s mascot and U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.
  • DonorsChoose: The College Football Playoff Foundation and the 2022 College Football Playoff Indianapolis Host Committee are continuing to support teachers across the state of Indiana by helping fund their classroom projects through DonorsChoose.  Many teachers turn to DonorsChoose to fulfill the needs of their students. The mission of DonorsChoose is to make it easy for anyone to help support teachers, who often dip into their own pockets to provide resources for their students. Almost 1000 projects currently are listed on the DonorsChoose platform from Indiana teachers. The Indianapolis Host Committee is working to helping fund projects that support teachers trying to deliver basic needs to vulnerable students and expand the opportunities and resources available. The community can help the Indianapolis teachers in donating to these projects, by visiting the page here.
  • Teach Indy Grant: The College Football Playoff Foundation and the 2022 Indianapolis Host Committee is committing $10,000 in financial assistance to Teach Indy in support of the recruitment for aspiring teachers in Center Township schools through The Mind Trust. The granted funds will target teachers of color who will begin a pathway to licensure through two pipelines: (1) Paraprofessionals and other staff beginning the Klipsch Educators College at Marian University to obtain a degree in teaching, or (2) the IPS Cadet Corps earning dual credit through IVY Tech during high school in an effort to begin college with 30 credits, moving them closer to licensure.

Proceeds from the Extra Yard for Teachers events will benefit the CFP Foundation to support its mission of uplifting teachers. As part of the 2022 CFP National Championship, the CFP Foundation supports projects in the host city that make a positive impact on education for years to come. The Indianapolis Host Committee and the CFP Foundation made a $1.5 million total contribution to support the Indiana Learning Lab (formerly Indiana eLearning Lab), a free, personalized microlearning platform, and Teach Indy, an effort to recruit and develop high-quality, diverse educators in Indianapolis.


About the 2022 College Football Playoff Indianapolis Host Committee 

The 2022 College Football Playoff Indianapolis Host Committee works with the CFP to promote, organize, and execute the January 10, 2022, CFP National Championship and its related events in the Indianapolis community. The Indianapolis Host Committee remains committed to a seamless partnership with the CFP and stakeholders to continue making a difference in communities across the state of Indiana after the game and into the future. For more information, visit IndyFootball2022.com. 

About the College Football Playoff Foundation 

The CFP Foundation is the community-engagement arm of the College Football Playoff, supporting education across the country. The CFP Foundation’s primary cause platform, Extra Yard for Teachers, is dedicated to elevating the teaching profession by inspiring and empowering teachers in four focus areas: resources, recognition, recruitment, and professional development. The CFP Foundation utilizes multiple partnerships to execute its initiatives and support positive educational outcomes. To learn more, visit cfp-foundation.org and follow Extra Yard for Teachers (@CFPExtraYard) on social media.