Return to Headlines

Rowan-Salisbury Schools Names Beginning Teacher of the Year, Principal of the Year

Amber White is the 2022-2023 Rowan-Salisbury Schools (RSS) Beginning Teacher of the Year, and Corriher Lipe Middle School (CLMS) principal, April Williamson, is the district’s Principal of the Year.

White, a second-year teacher at China Grove Middle School (CGMS), teaches math to eighth graders. She says she loves working with students every day and watching them grow.

“Amber White is a constant learner and leader who inspires her students to grow in ways they couldn't have imagined,” said CGMS principal Dr. Rikki Baldwin. “She advocates for our school and students' needs by continuously seeking knowledge on ways to explore opportunities for our students to become innovative thinkers. We are proud that she choose CGMS and Rowan Salisbury Schools.”

Williamson has been the principal of CLMS for three years, but she’s worked for RSS for more than two decades and has also served as an assistant principal, literacy design coach and teacher. Williamson was the RSS Teacher of the Year in 2008. 

There are so many unique teachers that bring so much to the school. It makes you want to be here,” Williamson said. “We support each other.”

Interim Superintendent April Kuhn describes Williamson as “extraordinary.”

“She spends her time lifting up others. She goes out of her way to build her team and empower them and to make the students and the staff stronger,” Kuhn added.

Granite Quarry Elementary School principal, April Spry, is the runner-up for Principal of the Year.

In addition to White, Beginning Teacher of the Year finalists include:  

  1. Ashley Bishop, Bostian Elementary School

  2. Emilee Clinker, Corriher Lipe Middle School

  3. Ally Davis, West Rowan Middle School

  4. Nucola Joyner, Knox Middle School

  5. Julia Machado, West Rowan High School

  6. Anna Palmer, Knollwood Elementary School

  7. Ashton Spiva, Southeast Middle School 


Prizes included more than $100 in Amazon gift cards, including donations from the Epsilon Chapter of DKG, flowers from Big Dog Flowers, a basket provided by Maia Smith at Coldwell Banker CK Select, and a variety of local gifts from North State Candle Co, Stitches in the Grove, Woodleaf Lanes and the NC Transportation Museum. 


Judges for both competitions included West Rowan Middle School Assistant Principal Melissa Powers, 2022-23 RSS Teacher of the Year Rachel Moysan, 2021-22 Principal of the Year Derek DiStefano, RSS Director of Recruitment and Retention Dr. Amanda Macon, retired educator and member of the Rowan County Chamber of Commerce Patricia Ricks and Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education member  Jean Kennedy.


Amber White

Amber White


April Williamson

April Williamson