Central States Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages

2011 CSCTFL Teacher of the Year

Wendy Brownell


In the 17 years that Wendy Brownell has taught Spanish to elementary, middle school, and high school students, she has accomplished much and earned many kudos. In addition to earning her B.S. in Spanish from the University of Missouri-Columbia and her M.S from Missouri State University, Wendy is also a National Board certified teacher and has received a superior OPI rating in Spanish.

Wendy has served as the advisor for the H.S. Latin Dance Club and the World Language Club, chaperone for several student trips/home stays, and supporter of technology. She has attended numerous local, state, regional, and national workshops and conferences as participant and presenter, and she has received several scholarships and grants to enhance her own professional development. Wendy is a member of FLAM, CSCTFL, ACTFL, AATSP, NNELL, and NADSFL.

“Wendy is the consummate professional always reaching for best practices to improve her students’ learning.”

Carrol Lund,
FLAM President

“Her only flaw is that she cares too much!”

Ben Brown


2011 CSCTFL Teacher of the Year Finalists 


Debbie McCorkle

Chillicothe, Ohio

A graduate of Ohio University and the University of Northern Iowa, Debbie McCorkle has been teaching French for 23 years. Currently teaching at Unioto High School, Debbie has also taught at the college level. She received her National Board Certification for World Languages in 2010.

Debbie was a 2009 recipient of the Library of Congress seminar and also the Charles J. Ping Institute for the Teaching of the Humanities. In 2007 she won a place at a National Endowment for the Humanities seminar in Lyon France. She also participated in a Fulbright-Hayes Group Project Abroad to Cameroon, Africa, in 1999. Debbie has presented at the OFLA Conference and the Central States Conference and has been involved with OFLA committees.

“Her desire to read about Islam, women’s issues in Africa, minorities in France, trends in education, and so on, is insatiable. Moreover, Debbie takes advantage of every opportunity that comes her way to travel. As a result, she is able to enrich her presentations and lessions with exciting personal stories and fascinating artificats that pique the interest of her colleagues and students.”

Stacy J. Knipp

“As a teacher, Mrs. McCorkle is very devoted to teaching and dedicated to her students’ education. She is always prepared and goes above and beyond to make sure that every student has a firm grasp on the material before moving on. . . . Mrs. McCorkle truly conveys her love for the French language through her teaching.”

Morgan Rhodes

“With Madame McCorkle, not only do we learn a language, we learn useful life lessons which will carry on with us into our futures. Looking back, I think I need to give that messed-up computer [that accidently put me in French class instead of Spanish class] a hug!

Kiira Harkins



Candace Sherwood

Urbandale, Iowa

A graduate of the University of Iowa and Drake University, Candace taught at the high school level for 22 years before moving into the realm of elementary Spanish teacher. She has also presented for the Bureau of Education and Research and worked at Concordia Language Villages.

Candace is a published author, “Strengthening Foreign Language Instruction: Practical Strategies for Increasing Your Students’ Achievement and Motivation in Foreign Language Learning.” As a Fulbright scholarship recipient, she studied curriculum in Mexico in 1989. She has been active in the Iowa World Language Association, serving as President from 1997-2001, as well as many important roles in the IWLA conference, where she is a frequent presenter.

“She plans incredibly detailed, engaging lessons for her students. It is normal for her to be at school well after 5:00 transforming her room into a market for the next day, or preparing materials for an activity or game. Her classes are rigorous and she gives students the assistance that they need to be successful. Students learn much more than Spanish and culture in Maestra Sherwood’s classes; they learn life lessons and strategies for success.”

Kerisa Baedke

“I truly appreciate the culture that was introduced to me by Maestra Sherwood. Before I came to her class in my sophomore year in high school, I had no interest in pursuing Spanish. Maestra Sherwood brought a passion forth in her classroom that pushed me to better myself. I began to think in Spanish, talk to myself in Spanish, and see what else I could learn and how fast. By the end of the year, I too had this passion.”

Kelsey Lepperd


Lisa Marie Showers

River Falls, Wisconsin

A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, Lisa has been teaching French for 23 years. Currently teaching French I-V at the middle school and high school level in the School District of River Falls, she received her National Board Certification in World Languages Other Than English in 2003. She also taught elementary French for 11 years, lectures at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, and served as a camp counselor at Concordia Language Villages. Lisa has done it all!

In 2005, Lisa initiated a partnership with the cognitively disabled class at her school, where her students teach 25-minute French classes to students who would not normally be able to take foreign language classes. She has also served as a volunteer for Haitian Relief Services, by offering translation services and fund raising for a local charity. She has presented at the WAFLT conference, the WI-NNELL FLESFEST, the AATF, the MCTLC State Conference, and the Central States Conference.

“In three years, Madame Showers has made me see the beauty of teaching and learning a foreign language. Not only do I wish to pursue a career in French, but I wish to further understand why Madame has the love for it that she does. . . . She illustrates the beauty of French and the beauty of teaching.”

Meghan M. Erickson

“She also challenges her classes to speak in French as much as we possibly can. Because of that, I now have my brain rigged to speak in French and workout sentences with proper grammar. I didn’t think in English in her class; I though it French.”

Dorothy Parent

“Madame Showers teaches French language skills in an environment that fosters a love of learning and an eagerness to incorporae language into a larger role. . . an opportunity to explore the world.”

Barbara E. and Christopher H. Tashijan
Parents of Students

“Lisa Showers is known for her outstanding accomplishments in the French classroom day in and day out. She holds high standards of achievement for herself and her students, yet she teaches in such an engaging and affirming manner that her students lover her and work hard to do their very best to learn the language and culture of France and French-speaking peoples. 






© 2019 Central States Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages

P.O. Box 404
Ishpeming, MI 49849 
Email: csctfl.exec.director@gmail.com

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