A group of the nation’s most accomplished STEM teachers selected as Albert Einstein Educator Fellows Teachers representing 11 states have been selected to apply their classroom experience to federal, congressional and executive branch offices.

AEF - Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship Program logo

June 26, 2024

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Fifteen K-12 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) teachers from across the United States have been named 2024-2025 Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellows. Selected Fellows will spend 11 months serving in a federal agency or U.S. Congressional office in Washington, DC, engaged in the national STEM education arena.

The Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship (AEF) Program provides a unique opportunity for accomplished K-12 STEM educators to apply their extensive classroom knowledge and experiences to their host offices to inform federal STEM education efforts.

The 2024-2025 Einstein Fellows are as follows:

Name Location
Jorge Ambriz Phoenix, AZ
Veena Black Atlanta, GA
Judy Butcher Lubbock, TX
Sarah Compton Chicago, IL
Nathan Diehl Boyds, MD
Jessica Fries-Gaither Hilliard, OH
Dara Gardner  Colorado Springs, CO
Janet Kahn Falls Church, VA
Katherine Mauro Brookfield, CT
Zachary Minchow-Proffitt Leesburg, VA
Ralph Pantozzi Millington, NJ 
Nancy Penchev West Park, FL
Victoria Thomson Niantic, CT
Selene Verhofstad Pasadena, TX
Charles Wang Pearland, TX


The 2024-2025 Einstein Fellows come from K-12 schools across the country and represent diverse teaching backgrounds—with expertise in science, engineering, computer science and mathematics. Federal agencies and U.S. Congressional Offices will benefit from Fellows’ real-world experiences as educators. In return, Einstein Fellows will gain understanding of the role of the Federal Government in the U.S. education enterprise, knowledge of resources available to students and educators, and broader perspectives on national education issues that can be applied to the classroom or to leadership positions in their districts or elsewhere.

The AEF Program, now celebrating its 34th year of operation, is managed by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science’s Office of Workforce Development for Teachers and Scientists in collaboration with the sponsoring agencies and the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE).

Sponsoring agencies for the 2024-2025 Einstein Fellows include DOE, the Library of Congress, the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Geological Survey, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. In addition to sponsoring placements at DOE headquarters, DOE sponsors five placements in U.S. Congressional offices.

Applications will open on August 9, 2024, for the 2025-2026 cohort. Additional information about the program, including eligibility requirements, program benefits, application requirements and access to the online application system may be found at https://science.osti.gov/wdts/einstein.

Media Contacts

Pam Bonee
Director, Communications
Phone: 865.603.5142

Wendy West
Manager, Communications
Phone: 865.207.7953

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) asset that is dedicated to enabling critical scientific, research, and health initiatives of the department and its laboratory system by providing world class expertise in STEM workforce development, scientific and technical reviews, and the evaluation of radiation exposure and environmental contamination.

ORISE is managed by ORAU, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, for DOE’s Office of Science. The single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, the Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.osti.gov.