Milken Educator Awards

News Release - Anchorage Teacher Bobbi Jo Erb Wins Milken Educator Award for Alaska

2009 Milken Educator Awards, 8th Grade Teacher

Bobbi Jo Erb

Bobbi Jo Erb of Anchorage has received the 2009 Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award for Alaska.

Erb teaches eighth-grade math at Mirror Lake Middle School in the Anchorage School District. She will receive $25,000 from the Milken Family Foundation of Santa Monica, Calif., during a national education conference this spring in Los Angeles. Milken recipients are chosen for their educational talent, educational accomplishments beyond the classroom, potential for professional and olicy leadership, and an engaging and inspiring presence.

Erb “has a fantastic ability to make content accessible for every kid in her class,” Leslie Vandergaw, Executive Director of Middle Schools for the Anchorage School District, told the Milken Family Foundation. “She can take students who have struggled and turn the kids around and get them on the upward trajectory. It’s great. She’s engaging, the kids are learning, and she is wonderful at relating with parents and keeping them in the loop. They feel like they are really partners.”

Erb was notified of the $25,000 award in a surprise ceremony October 19 attended by Alaska Education Commissioner Larry LeDoux, State School Board President Esther Cox, Anchorage School District Superintendent Carol Comeau, former Milken awardees, and the staff and students of Mirror Lake Middle School.

Blue ribbon committees in each of 47 participating states recommend candidates to the Milken Family Foundation.

“Ms. Erb represents the dedication, care and creativity I have seen in teachers around the state,” Commissioner LeDoux said in a statement. “When we pause to recognize and thank an exceptional teacher such as Ms. Erb, we are acknowledging the importance of teachers in the lives of our families.”

Mirror Lake Middel School can be reached at 907-742-3500. The Milken Family Foundation can be reached at