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Ritenour High School Teacher Honored with Emerson Award

Colette Love Hilliard, RHS English language arts teacher, is recognized by administrators for earning the Emerson Award. Colette Love Hilliard, a Ritenour High School English language arts teacher, has been selected as a recipient of the 2019 Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award. Administrators surprised her with the news on Oct. 29.

The Emerson Award recognizes St. Louis-area teachers of students in kindergarten through college level for their vital role in shaping their students’ lives. Love Hilliard was selected by Ritenour administrators for her outstanding contributions to the teaching profession and for her role in inspiring Ritenour students. She will be honored with other Emerson Award recipients in November at the Ritz-Carlton in Clayton.

Ritenour High School Principal Jeff Marker said Love Hilliard’s passion for teaching and compassion for her students propels her students to reach new heights in their writing and appreciation for literature as well as inspires them to make a positive difference in their community.

“Ms. Love Hilliard knows how to bring out the best in her students, helping them dig deeper into themselves with their writing and in their understanding of some of the classics they read in her classes,” said Marker. “She not only is an outstanding teacher, but is a true mentor to her students and colleagues by modeling empathy, compassion and kindness in all that she does.”

In addition to teaching, she sponsors the Creative Writing Club and is a mentor for new teachers. She also is the author of “A Wonderful Catastrophe,” an anthology of blackout poetry and artwork that was published in 2018.

Love Hilliard, who was Ritenour High School’s 2019 Diamond Circle Teacher, has taught at the school since 2008. Prior to her tenure in Ritenour, she taught at Wright City High School.

As an Emerson As an Emerson award recipient, Love Hilliard will be eligible to apply for grants provided by Emerson to support curriculum and instruction in her Creative Writing, English III and Senior English courses.