Houlton Spanish teacher is one of 10 nation wide to receive inaugural HMH Lighthouse Award

Published: May. 9, 2023 at 1:29 PM EDT
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HOULTON, Maine (WAGM) - It’s teacher appreciation week and a Houlton teacher started off the week celebrating in a special way. Traci Storti, the Spanish teacher for Houlton High School, was one of 10 educators across the nation, and the only teacher in Maine, to be awarded the inaugural HMH Lighthouse Award. More than 500 teachers were nominated. The award honors teachers who show a commitment to going above and beyond for their students, who are committed to the success of students in every part of their lives and serve as a guiding force to those around them, inspiring them to be lighthouses to others. Storti, who was nominated by a colleague, found out she won the award while on a trip with students in Europe.

Traci Storti Lighthouse Award Winner: At first it came in to my work email as, congratulations you have won. And I’m thinking, I never get spam to my email, my work email, what’s going on with that? And I read it and I found out the colleague that nominated me and I thought, this is crazy! And it said I was a finalist, so I thought that I would have to go on and do more with that. But I just had to say yes, thank you, I will accept your award. So, to be one of ten teachers recognized in the U.S. I have no words for the great honor that this is.

Jarod Toner, Freshman Spanish Student: She has a unique way of teaching for sure, but it’s very effective and it creates a very fun classroom environment. I don’t think I could ask for a better teacher.

Storti has been teaching for 27 years, 26 of those at Houlton High School. The winners of the Lighthouse award will receive a visit from speaker and author of The Lighthouse Effect, Steve Pemberton and NAIC COO Carmen Ortiz-McGhee. They also will receive an all expenses paid trip to the 2023 Model Schools Conference in Orlando, Florida in June.