The 2018 Nick Ferentinos Award for Advising Excellence goes to Kathi Duffel, journalism instructor at Bear Creek High School in Stockton.
The award recognizes leadership and support that goes beyond the journalism program and has impact across campus, community and local or regional associations. It is named for the late Nick Ferentinos of Homestead High School in Cupertino, who was a nationally honored journalism educator and mentor to educators.
CNPA staffer Joe Wirt, representing California Journalism & Media Affiliates, presented the award to Duffel on May 18 during a journalism class at her high school. The nomination heralded Duffel for running an outstanding journalism program that leads the way on important stories with all components represented. She was recognized for overseeing a journalism program that has met and beaten First Amendment challenges in its coverage of its school community. Work by student staff on the Bruin Voice has won local, regional and national awards during Duffel’s tenure.
The CJ&MA comprise leaders of California campus media associations. Previous educators of the year nominate current contenders for awards at the university, community college and high school level. The awards are funded by the California Press Foundation. View previous honorees
“Her first editions of the school newspaper were run off a ditto machine,” Duffel’s nomination said. “Now it has evolved to one of the top high school papers in the country.”
Among other honors, Duffel received a 2015 James Madison Award from the Northern California Society of Professional Journalists Freedom of Information Committee.
Other CJ&MA honors this year went to: Julie Braun (Lifetime Achievement), Irvine High School; Pat McKean (Lifetime Achievement), Long Beach City College; Meg O’Neil (Lifetime Achievement), Citrus College, Glendora; Brady Teufel (Educator of the Year), California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo; and Matthew Perry (Champion of Journalism Education), assistant superintendent, Sacramento County Office of Education.