Public School Teachers, Community Champions & Outstanding Organizations statewide


— The nonprofits Maryland CASH (Creating Assets, Savings, and Hope) Campaign, Maryland Council on Economic Education (MCEE) and the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) announced the winners of the fourth annual Financial Education and Capability Awards. The Awards were highlighted during a special reception then the Awards’ recipients were recognized during the regular 8pm session of the Maryland General Assembly on March 13, 2017 in Annapolis.

The Financial Education and Capability Awards Program highlights the dedication and success of public school teachers, community champions and outstanding organizations who deliver financial education. Financial education focuses on a range of financial management concepts and behaviors including budgeting, careers and income, credit, savings, financial decision-making, and understanding values and habits about money.

2017 Financial Education and Capability Award Winners:

Elementary School Teacher or Program: Taylor Estes, Princess Anne Elementary School (Somerset County). Personal finance units with life lessons on living within your means

Middle School Teacher or Program: Joseph DeStefanis, Margaret Brent Middle School, Mechanicsville (St. Mary’s County). Authored “The Stock Market for Life” to teach The Stock Market Game to public school students

High School Teacher or Program: Nicole Cathirell, New Town High School, Owings Mills (Baltimore County). Exemplifies the Junior Achievement mission of empowering youth to own their own economic success

Community Champion Award (Individual Educator): Tisa Silver Canady, University of Maryland, Baltimore (Baltimore City). Volunteer educator, speaker & advocate for financial education at UMB’s campus & throughout Greater Baltimore

Outstanding Organization Award: MakingChange, (Howard County). Provides financial education in a variety of ways and locations to low-to-moderate income adults in Howard County

The Maryland CASH Campaign, Maryland Council on Economic Education and MSDE thank OneMain Financial’s charitable foundation and The Woodside Foundation for their generous sponsorship of the $1,000 financial awards.

Robin McKinney, Director, Maryland CASH Campaign, stated, “Maryland CASH commends the dedication of the many public school teachers and community champions who deliver financial education to individuals of all ages from youth to older adults….Helping individuals make good financial decisions.”

“Current conditions within our local and global economy coupled with the complexity of personal finance issues require that everyone, especially today’s students, have a solid understanding of economic and personal finance issues to live a fruitful and successful life,” said Mary Ann Hewitt, Executive Director of the Maryland Council on Economic Education. “Without the dedication of those like this year’s winners of the Financial Education and Capability Awards, most students would have little to no knowledge on these critical topics.”

Recognition of public school teachers is tied to the Maryland State Curriculum for Personal Financial Literacy Education, which was created under the leadership of the Maryland State Department of Education and mandated for implementation in local school systems in grades three through twelve beginning in September of 2011. The awards program places the spotlight on the outstanding work taking place in our schools and communities. “These honorees provide both students and adults with the knowledge and skills to make sound financial decisions,” said Dr. Karen Salmon, State Superintendent of Schools. “I am pleased that the Financial Education and Capability Awards spotlight their talent and commitment to addressing this critical need.”

OneMain Financial’s charitable foundation sponsored the Teacher Awards intended to recognize teachers in Maryland who exemplify excellence in financial education and who practice innovative strategies in the classroom. “At OneMain Financial, we are proud to partner with organizations that help our youth gain financial knowledge,” said Trish Weaver, OneMain Financial communications and philanthropy director. “We are thrilled to recognize teachers who incorporate financial subjects into their curriculum and give students the knowledge they need to be financially successful.”

The Woodside Foundation sponsored the Community Champion Award and the Outstanding Organization Award. “These two awards shine a spotlight on important efforts across the state to provide financial education and capability skills to adults and families beyond the classroom,” said Meg Woodside, Trustee of the Woodside Foundation. “I have personally seen the sustained impact both Tisa Silver Canady, Director of Financial Education and Wellness at the University of Maryland, Baltimore and MakingChange have had in our community, in particular through their expanding outreach and programmatic innovations to meet evolving family needs. The recognition of their ongoing leadership in financial capability is very well deserved.”

The Financial Education and Capability Awards were developed to call attention to the importance of financial education to the lives of Marylanders. An easy and free way for people across the state to learn to better manage their personal finances is by accessing the Maryland CASH Academy, the only online source for free, in-person financial education classes.


The Maryland CASH Campaign is a statewide network of organizations that promotes programs, products and policies that increase the financial security of low-to moderate-income individuals and families across Maryland. Maryland CASH advocates on behalf of these families, as well as provides financial education programs such as the Maryland CASH Academy at Their partner organizations provide free tax preparation sites offering access to appropriate financial services and benefits screening. For more information, contact Ms. Robin McKinney, Director of the Maryland CASH Campaign, at or 443-692-9422. @Maryland_CASH @MDCASHAcademy


For over 60 years, the Maryland Council on Economic Education (MCEE) has worked to assure that Maryland’s young people leave school equipped with the economic and financial literacy knowledge and decision-making skills they will need to make informed, rational decisions as consumers, workers, citizens, savers, investors, and participants in the global economy. MCEE is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and affiliate of the national Council For Economic Education. For more information, contact Emily McDermott at 410-568-8814 or


The mission of MSDE is to provide leadership, support, and accountability for effective systems of public education, library services, and rehabilitation services. For more information, contact William Reinhard, MSDE Media Relations, at 410-767-0486 or