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For the last 28 years our organization has been giving awards to selected members of the community in two categories: the Outstanding Dedication Award for inspiring advocacy on behalf of Montessori education, and the Susie Huston Award for excellence and inspiration in teaching.

To view a list of past award recipients, click here.


Nomination forms will be posted each spring. Stay tuned for more information about the nomination process.


Recipients of all awards are honored at our annual spring event (formerly Spring Tea, now Toast of the Town). The award winners and their families, friends, and colleagues are welcomed and encouraged to attend this celebration along with the greater Montessori Community.



About the Award: The Susie Huston Memorial Award, a long-standing OMA tradition, is given each year to a Montessori educator in the OMA community who exemplifies excellence and inspiration in teaching. Susie Huston was a dedicated Montessori guide in the Corvallis community who died in a car accident in 1992. Learn more about Susie Huston here.

Eligibility: Current Montessori teachers in the Pacific Northwest are eligible for the Susie Huston Memorial Award. While OMA membership is not a requirement, recipients will have contributed in some way to the larger Montessori community.

Criteria: OMA seeks to recognize nominees who are passionate about Montessori, who demonstrate a deep understanding of the Montessori method, and have integrated theory and practice with grace. Consideration will be given to whether nominees have been nominated before, and we will also endeavor to recognize teachers from a diversity of schools that may or may not have received this recognition before. There are no requirements in terms of number of years in the classroom or training affiliation.

Award Ceremony: The recipient of this award and the OMA Outstanding Dedication Award are honored at our annual spring event.  The recipient and their families, friends and colleagues are welcome and encouraged to attend this celebration, along with the Montessori Community.

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About the Award: The Outstanding Dedication Award is presented each year to an inspiring member of the community, or a group of individuals, whose exceptional practice and commitment to outreach is recognized by their peers and colleagues. This award seeks to honor and offer gratitude to the recipient for their outstanding work in promoting the well-being of children and fostering a community of support for parents, school communities, and all Montessorians. 

Eligibility: The Outstanding Dedication Award is open to any individual or group in the Oregon & SW Washington community who is fulfilling the OMA mission. The nominee need not be a member of OMA to be eligible. Montessori training is not a requirement for this award.

Criteria: OMA seeks to recognize individuals or groups whose passionate advocacy for Montessori has fulfilled the OMA mission of advancing the Montessori movement. This may include but is not limited to:

  • starting new and innovative programs,

  • inspired and lifelong support to the professional development of a school or organization that supports Montessori, or

  • local, regional, national, or global efforts to make Montessori accessible to all.

We will take into consideration whether nominees have been nominated before, and we will also endeavor to recognize individuals and groups that may not have been recognized before by the OMA community.



About the Award: In 2021, our Board of Directors felt that the unique challenges of the past school year called for something different. That is why we created the Outstanding Dedication to Montessori Education in 20/21 Award, designed to elevate and celebrate the work of Montessori educators who, despite the unprecedented challenges of teaching in a pandemic, demonstrated exceptional dedication in their teaching and within their communities.

About the Recipients: We received an outpouring of nominations of incredible and deserving educators. After an extensive blind review process, we were thrilled to announce our winners: Andy Orenstein of Portland Montessori Collaborative in the Infant/Toddler category, Claire Lundy of Frog Song Montessori in the Primary category, Gabriel Barber of Montessori School of Beaverton in the Elementary/Adolescent category, and Harmony Montessori in the School Team category.


We were delighted to celebrate our four winners as well as all of our nominees in a special edition of the Forza Vitale! Each award recipient received a framed certificate and gift baskets filled with generous donations from local Portland businesses and a range of Montessori companies and organizations. Click here to view the Forza! special edition.

Pictured: Primary level award winner Claire Lundy of Frog Song Montessori

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