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Judging Panel for the Forward Together Grant

Judging Panel

"Not only do we want to reduce our energy in-house, but we want to show other schools and other communities that this is possible. If we can do it, so can you."

- Scott Anderson, 2014 Forward Together Award Winner

Mike Thompson

Mike Thompson

Deputy State Superintendent

State Superintendent Tony Evers took office in July 2009 and appointed Mike Thompson as the Deputy State Superintendent. Prior to his current position, Mike served as the Executive Assistant to then State Superintendent Libby Burmaster. Previous to these positions, he served as the Department’s Federal Policy Advisor.

Mike has a doctorate in Education Administration and has taught for ten years in Wisconsin public schools. Mike's previous positions at DPI include education consultant, director of student services, and assistant state superintendent.

Bianca Baldridge

Bianca Baldridge

Assistant Professor for the Department of Educational Policy Studies

Bianca J. Baldridge is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She has been a youth worker within community-based afterschool programs for over ten years. She earned her PhD in Sociology and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.

Dr. Baldridge’s research interests are in community and school partnerships, after school education, sociology of youth, race, inequality and education, urban schooling, critical pedagogies, and black youth activism.

Her experience as an instructor, curriculum developer, and consultant to community youth programs has informed her research in profound ways. She has worked with programs in Los Angeles and Oakland, California, and New York City, with organizations such as the Future Leaders of America, Compton Unified School District, Oakland All City Council, the New York City Lab School, and the Harlem Health Promotion Center. Bianca has also worked internationally with youth as a consultant for an international youth leadership forum in Aomori, Japan as well as a curriculum developer and consultant for youth centers established to educate youth about HIV/AIDS in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Woody Wiedenhoeft

Woody Wiedenhoeft

Executive Director, Wisconsin Association of School Business Officials

The WASBO Board hired Woody Wiedenhoeft as the WASBO Executive Director in September 2006. He has been active in WASBO since 1974 and served a term as the President of WASBO.

Prior to joining WASBO, Woody completed a 35-year career in public education as a teacher, school business official, and school consultant.

Nancy Thompson

Nancy Thompson

Director for Region 12 at Wisconsin Association of School Boards

Nancy Thompson has been a member of the Waterloo School Board since 1986. First elected as WASB’s Region 12 Director in 1993 (serving until 2003), she was re-elected to that position in 2008 and has served as WASB's president in both 1996 and 2013. Thompson championed WASB's "Forward Together" theme throughout 2013.

She has also been a WASB Insurance trustee since 2006, a member of the CESA # 2 Board of Control since 1997 (and its chairperson since 2003), and is a member of Wisconsin's Group Insurance Board, Wisconsin's Blind and Visually Impaired Advisory Council, the State PTA Board of Directors, and the Jefferson County Head Start Policy Council.

A 4-H leader for the past 29 years and a former high school English and speech teacher, Nancy is the Clerk for the Town of Portland. She and her husband Lloyd have three children and two grandsons.

Kyle Walsh

Kyle Walsh

Wisconsin Teacher & 2014 Forward Together Award Winner

Teaching wasn't always the plan for Kyle, but during his first year at UW-Madison he discovered that was his passion. After spending five years in school, with experiences such as playing the flugelhorn in the UW Marching Band and studying abroad in Ghana, Kyle began teaching first grade in 2012 in Verona, Wisconsin. He is currently in his third year at Sugar Creek Elementary, where he enjoys engaging children in music, movement, and learning.

Kyle earned one of the 2014 Forward Together Awards for his literacy-based music video and Little Free Library project. You can find Kyle's two other music videos on YouTube: "Mathematical Humdingers," and "Sugar Day." Other than teaching, Kyle has earned a master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction, and is currently working on a second master's in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis, both at UW-Madison.