11th Anniversary

Purpose: Reward and acknowledge teachers who, "Entice students to come to school every day."

Mr. Lakin was a native of Emerson, Iowa. A well-known area philanthropist, he created the award in 2008 to recognize teachers who "motivate kids to come to school each day," and see teaching as a calling, rather than a job.

Specific Award Information:

For the past 10 years, KMA and the Green Hills Area Education Agency have presented the Charles E. Lakin Outstanding Teacher Award. Four instructors within a 40-mile radius of Emerson --Lakin's hometown--receive the awards each year for efforts in enticing students to come to school each day.

With this spring's process, the Lakin Foundation will have awarded more than $360,000 to area teachers and their associated school districts over the last 10 years.

Winners will be announced in May. No announcements will be made prior to the actual presentation. Teachers nominated for the Award will not be notified of their nomination.

  • Number of awards:  Total of 4 primary awards annually (2 for elementary schools and 2 for secondary schools).
  • The winners will receive: $12,500 each. Teacher receives $10,000 and school $2,500 (2 for elementary schools and 2 for secondary schools).

Geographic Boundaries:

Iowa Public School Districts Within 40 Miles of Emerson Iowa: Anita, Atlantic, AHSTW, Clarinda, Corning, Cumberland, East Mills, Essex, Fremont-Mills, Glenwood, Griswold, Hamburg, Massena, Red Oak, Riverside, Shenandoah, Sidney, Stanton, South Page, Treynor, Tri-Center, Underwood, Villisca. (Note: Larger school districts, Council Bluffs and Lewis Central, are not included.) Anita, Cumberland, & Massena comprise the CAM School; Corning & Villisca comprise the Southwest Valley Schools.

  • The 20 Iowa School districts who are within 40 miles of Emerson, Iowa.
  • Excludes larger urban communities (Council Bluffs & Lewis Central).

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Certified full-time teachers or counselors (does not include administrators) currently employed in accredited Iowa schools.  (No home schools).
  • Minimum of three years' continuous teaching experience in the same school.
  • Self-promotion or group campaigns will result in disqualification.


An anonymous panel of judges has been selected. All are from the immediate area of the award. None are current employees or board of education members. The Lakin family will not be involved in the judging process.


March 1st - March 31st: Nominations accepted.
May: Awards announced.

Nomination Form:

Only fully completed nominations will be considered.

Teacher's Information
School District: 
What do they Teach?: 
Your Information
Your Name: 
Best Contact Number: 
Relation to Nominee: 
  1. What has the teacher done within your school that encouraged/enticed students to come to school every day?
  2. Describe specific examples of individuals, classes, or how the teacher achieved having students come to school.
  3. What makes this teacher different than others?
  4. Why do students want to attend this teacher's class?
Number of characters: 2000 Minimum: 200
Provide Examples
  1. What makes this teacher exceptional as compared to other teachers?
  2. Provide specific examples of how this teacher is exceptional.
Number of characters: 2000 Minimum: 200
I approve my nomination information being released to my nominee if they win. 
One Last Question
How did you find out about the Lakin Award? 
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Thank you!