Established in 1996 in honor of the late Al Davis, Riverdale’s long-time coach and physical education teacher, the Al Davis Teaching Award honors a teacher or administrator who exemplifies the virtues taught by Al: persistence, sacrifice for the greater good, and team spirit. Vanessa Izquierdo, Lower School Technology Coordinator, received the award in 2020.
The Class of 1964 Al Davis Award
To that teacher who teaches what Al Davis taught us;
That we are all capable of great things,
but only with our fullest effort.
That full effort itself is a joyous act,
and transforms even failure into a kind of success.
That community is a precious thing.
That we are all individuals,
and that the highest act of an individual is to contribute to a team.
That teaching at its highest level transcends the walls of a classroom
and the demands of a curriculum, and is finally an act of
mutual respect, commitment, and love.
Vanessa Izquierdo, Lower School Academic Technology Coordinator (2016-Present)
Manisha Doran, Middle and Upper School physical education (2005-Present)
Karen Cummings, fourth grade (1969–Present)
Beth Sholtes, Middle School health (1984–Present)
Demetra Caldwell ’97, third grade (2004–Present)
Jenny Eskin, Middle and Upper School history (1992–Present)
Natasha Schmemann, first grade (2004–Present)
Scott Ettinger, Middle and Upper School languages (1995–Present)
Ellen Greengrass, Lower School assistant head (2002–Present)
Joel Doerfler, Upper School history (1991–2018)
David Nicholson, Upper School English (1965–2010)
Debbie Wing, environmental educator, (1978–Present)
Joan Bailey, Middle and Upper School math (1983–2011)
Lorraine Mahoney, kindergarten (1973–Present)
Carol Pouliot, Middle and Upper School physical education and athletics, Upper School dean (1986–Present)
Michelle Roussan, world language (1989–2013)
Alan Pike, Middle and Upper School science (1995–Present)
Rebecca Milstein (Cohen), second grade (1994–Present)
Ronald Murison, Upper School English, interdisciplinary studies (1989–Present)
Marie Verde, Lower School music (1995–Present)
William Pahlka, Middle and Upper School English (1978–2014)
Maggie Blane, first grade (1974–2003)
Elena Rothstein, Middle and Upper School Spanish (1981–2014)
Rebecca Greller, kindergarten (1993–Present)
Michael Michelson, Upper School mathematics (1974–2015)