And the National Teacher of the Year Is…

The Air Force Association is pleased to announce Greg Ennis of James Clemens High School in Madison, Alabama, as the 2016 National Teacher of the Year (TOY) Presented by Rolls-Royce.  As part of the AFA’s mission to encourage education in Aerospace Education and STEM, the Teacher of the Year program ensures America’s aerospace excellence by supporting the teachers that carry out that mission in the classroom.

“Greg’s longstanding commitment to STEM education along with the dedication he possesses for the success of his students deems him truly deserving of this award. We’re excited to advance our partnership with Rolls-Royce through this Teacher of the Year program to continue highlighting the great work of educators, and their contributions,” said Dick Bundy, AFA Vice Chairman of the Board.

“I am greatly honored to be recognized as National Teacher of the Year by the Air Force Association.  Organizations such as AFA who are willing to go out of their way to support teachers and students through CyberPatriot, StellarXplorers, Teacher of the Year, and other programs are improving education for both students and teachers,” said Greg Ennis. 

Additionally, the Air Force Association has partnered with Rolls-Royce to sponsor the AFA National Teacher of the Year program. This sponsorship will provide additional resources for the National Teacher of the Year including representing AFA at the National Convention and Air, Space and Cyber Conference and various Rolls-Royce events throughout the year. This inaugural year of the presenting sponsorship with Rolls-Royce marks the beginning of a strong partnership in advancing aerospace education.

“We congratulate Mr. Greg Ennis of James Clemens High School in Madison, Alabama, for being the selected as the 2016 AFA National Teacher of the Year.  Rolls-Royce is an engineering company at its heart, and we are proud to support STEM activities around the United States. Helping to prepare young people for careers in STEM is vital to the future of both the US Air Force and the aerospace industry. We wish him continued success with all his students in the future,” said Phil Burkholder, Rolls-Royce North America, President Defense Aerospace.

The top three AFA National Teachers of the Year presented by Rolls-Royce are as follows: 

Greg Ennis

2016 National AFA Teacher of the Year

Tennessee Valley Chapter 335, AL


Meredith Swartzendruber

First Runner Up

BG Bill Spruance Chapter 282, DE


Cecelia Ann Carroll

Second Runner Up

BG Harrison R Thyng Chapter 249, NH


Greg Ennis is a 12-year veteran teacher, teaching 9-12th grade engineering for the last 4 years at James Clemens High School in Madison, AL. Nominated by the TN Valley Chapter. Mr. Ennis is a stellar “alternative educator” who is a prime example of ”industry experience as a platform for academic careers.” Working in the engineering industry for nine years brought Greg Ennis great appreciation of and advocacy for exemplary workforce development educational programs. Starting as a substitute teacher, Mr. Ennis quickly found that being an educator fulfilled his goal of giving back to the community by influencing young people in ways that will impact them and society far into the future.

At school, he is the founder and/or sponsor and mentor for the: AFA StellarXplorers team, which made it to the 2016 national finals; FIRST and MATE Robotics clubs; Society of Women Engineers (SWENext) chapter, where his “Girls in STEM” club mentors female elementary and middle school students; Engineering club; InSPIRESS (Innovative System Project for the Increased

The AFA Teacher of the Year program dates back to the early 1990s where the mission to recognize classroom teachers (K-12) for their innovative and successful instructional programs originally began.