MƒA Muller Award for Professional Influence in Education


2021 Award Winners to be Announced in October

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2020 award was postponed.
All nominations submitted for the 2020 Muller Award will be considered in 2021. 

The MƒA Muller Award for Professional Influence in Education is awarded to two MƒA Master Teachers, one in mathematics and one in science, who have influenced the teaching profession in exceptional ways during their tenure as MƒA Master Teachers. The teaching profession needs accomplished teachers who are respected, recognized, and situated within communities where they can lead and learn alongside one another. At MƒA, we award fellowships based on these ideals. Our fellowships encourage accomplished mathematics and science teachers to continue teaching while building a deep professional network that supports their continued growth.

Read about past winners >>

For teaching to be truly respected, the voices of great teachers must be at the forefront of conversations about math and science education.  Their voices must be included in public discourse about educational policies, reforms, and initiatives that impact the profession of math and science teaching, as well as within their own school communities. Great teachers who use their professional influence to engage, encourage, and support others in their profession are an inspiration, and they warrant recognition.

Award Information

The MƒA Muller Award for Professional Influence in Education recognizes an extraordinary mathematics and science teacher from within the MƒA Master Teacher community who exerts professional influence in multiple ways, which may include:

  • advancing the broader math and/or science teaching profession with novel ideas, professional practice and expertise
  • advocating to elevate the teaching profession and inspire others
  • engaging in deep dialogue and research around current issues in math and/or science education
  • making a commitment to peer-to-peer learning and leading
  • demonstrating a dedication to the field of math and/or science education
  • exhibiting leadership within and beyond the MƒA community

The award carries a $20,000 honorarium for the teacher and a $5,000 award for the school or organization of its nominator. This award is made possible by financial support from MƒA Board Member Peter Muller and his wife Jillian through their Dancing Tides Foundation.

Eligibility & Nomination Process

Current MƒA Master Teachers who are in their second, third, fourth, or fifth Master Teacher Fellowship are eligible to be nominated. (The award recipient must be available on the evening of the award ceremony.) Due to changes in the award timeline last year as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, MƒA Master Teachers who were nominated for the 2020 award will be considered in the 2021 cycle; there is no need to submit another nomination form. 

Nomination Process

We seek nominations from individuals who work in math and science education and who want to recognize extraordinary MƒA Master Teachers who are making contributions to the field of STEM education. Nominations can be submitted by anyone in the following categories:

  • Principal, Assistant Principal, coach or non-MƒA teaching colleague from the teachers’ school
  • Any district or central administrator
  • A mathematician or scientist or faculty in higher education
  • Any professional engaged in STEM-related issues in education

*MƒA Staff Members and current MƒA teachers are not eligible to serve as nominators, though current MƒA teachers may serve as references.

A complete nomination consists of the following:

  • The Nomination Form, which includes contact information and title of the nominator. 
  • A written description (nomination letter) explaining how the nominee meets the criteria for this award (see Award Criteria). The description should not exceed three single-spaced, typed pages. The extent to which the description makes a succinct case for the teacher is more important than the letter’s length.
  • No more than three artifacts that illustrate the nominee’s influence. This may include items authored by the nominee, materials produced under the nominee’s leadership, and media articles about the nominee or their work.

Upon submission of a nominator’s materials (above), MƒA will contact the teacher being nominated to request contact information for two additional professionals who are willing to serve as references. At least one of these individuals must be from an entity other than the nominee’s school (current MƒA teachers may serve as references).

All nomination materials must be received by end of day on the application deadline in order to be considered for the award.

Award Criteria & Selection

Award Criteria

Nominee's contributions to the math and/or science teaching profession. 
How has this teacher worked to have a positive impact within their school community?
In what ways does this teacher use their voice to drive change outside their own classroom?

Nominee's commitment to supporting and influencing other math and/or science teachers.
How has this teacher demonstrated leadership in their own school and/or the broader math/science community?
What are the leadership qualities that define and distinguish this candidate?

Nominee inspires other teachers to stay in the teaching profession.
What distinguishes this teacher’s positive influence on others in the teaching profession?

Nominee’s work ethic has contributed to their success.
How has this teacher embraced optimism, dedication, and humility in their work?

Nominee’s professional achievements.
How has the work of this teacher been publicly recognized?
What professional contributions and efforts has this teacher made beyond their regular scope of work?

Award Selection Process

A small group of finalists will be selected by an external screening committee and sent to the MƒA Board of Directors who will determine the two winners (one in math and one in science). Winning teachers and their nominator will be recognized at the award ceremony. 

Nomination period - April 28 - June 30, 2021
Nomination deadline - June 30, 2021
Selection period - Summer 2021
Winner announced -  Fall 2021
Award ceremony - October 18, 2021


What are the criteria for selection?
Individuals will be selected based on evidence of influence and professional contribution to the teaching and education of mathematics and science, as well as support for other educators.

I was nominated last year - can I be nominated again?
Yes. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2020 award was postponed. If you were nominated for the 2020 award, your nomination will be considered in the 2021 cycle; there is no need to submit another nomination form.

I nominated a teacher last year - can I nominate the same teacher again and if so, do I need to re-submit my nomination information?
Yes, you can nominate the same teacher a second time. Unless otherwise instructed, you should resubmit the nomination, updating the material where necessary and desired. Please note that due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2020 award was postponed. If you nominated an MƒA Master Teacher for the 2020 award, they will be considered in the 2021 cycle; there is no need to submit another nomination form. 

I won the Muller Award last year - am I eligible to win again?
No, an individual teacher can only win the Muller Award once.

Why does the award put such an emphasis on influence?
MƒA recognizes, rewards, and celebrates excellent classroom teaching through fellowships and the work of the broader MƒA community. This award is different in that it seeks to recognize how teachers are positively impacting the broader landscape of math and science teaching and their fellow educators.

Are the recipients required to do anything specific with their monetary awards?
The award carries a $20,000 honorarium for the teacher and a $5,000 award for the school or organization of its nominator. The prize is unrestricted; recipients may spend as they choose.

Can I nominate myself?
No. Nominations must be made by individuals working in the field(s) of math and/or science education who wish to recognize the contributions of another math and/or science educator.

How do I find out which teachers are eligible?
You can find the list of eligible teachers here.

What if I have additional questions? 
Email us at mullerawardforinfluence@mathforamerica.org.