PAA Teacher Receives Excellence in Teaching Award

August 08, 2018 | Liesl Vistaunet

Stephen Lundquist, Portland Adventist Academy (PAA) Bible teacher and religion department chair, was honored Tuesday night, Aug. 7, 2018, with an Excellence in Teaching Award from the Alumni Awards Foundation (AAF). He was recognized for demonstrating outstanding professionalism, creativity and dedication in the classroom.

The ceremony took place at the North American Division (NAD) Teachers' Convention in Chicago, Ill., where AAF recognized an additional four Adventist educators from the NAD. Each received a $2,000 prize, a medallion and a framed certificate of recognition.

Kathryn Proffitt, AAF CEO, and Gordon Bietz, AAF board chairman, presented the award.

Joining Lundquist at the ceremony was Mechelle Peinado, PAA vice principal of academics; Gale Crosby, Oregon Conference vice president of education; and Dan Nicola, Oregon Conference associate superintendent of education.

“Stephen embodies the desire and drive for excellence,” says Peinado. “Not only does he care deeply about spiritually supporting each student, but he also invests time and energy, research, and reflection into continually growing as an instructor.” 

“It is no surprise that Stephen Lundquist is being awarded the Teacher of the Year,” says Jason Bibb, outgoing PAA principal. “His classes are planned with intention, and he cares deeply for each student. Our students and our staff are blessed by him, and PAA parents are thankful to know he is here guiding their kids. Jesus is in his heart, and it comes out in all he does at PAA. He truly deserves this recognition.”

“Stephen will tell you it’s not just him — that all of PAA’s teachers deserve this award,” says Nicola. “And it’s true: PAA has an incredible culture of nurturing young people in a genuine walk with Jesus. But the PAA staff would say that Stephen’s passion for Jesus is infectious. You can see this manifested every year through the students who choose to be lifelong friends with Jesus.”

Lundquist sees his work as a sacred calling and chose a teaching career even after serving in many successful ministerial roles. “I had so many teachers who made such a profoundly positive impact on me,” said Lundquist before his commissioning ceremony in 2015. “If I can pass that gift on to my students then I have done my job.”

Lundquist is one of three current PAA staff members who have been awarded the Excellence in Teaching prize. Mark Smith was honored in 2011, and Mechelle Peinado won in 2014 while teaching at Mount Ellis Academy in Bozeman, Mont.

Established in 1995, the AAF has recognized more than 110 Adventist educators in the NAD and has given away more than $2 million in awards.

Check out PAA's news page. Also, read more about Lundquist in the the articles Lundquist in the Classroom and Lundquist Commissioning Over Ordination.

You can also read how Mark Smith is helping students climb to the top.