Ms. Brown to be honored Nov. 12 at MAEA Conference in Worcester
CHELMSFORD, MA (Sept. 5, 2022) – It was in 2004 when Amy Brown was student teaching in the Salem School District, that she was made aware of the Massachusetts Art Educators Association (MAEA) Art Educator of the Year award.
She remembers eyeing a plaque presented to Dorothy “Dot” Arthur, longtime art educator at Salem’s Bentley Elementary School with whom she was teaching, by the MAEA. Privately, Ms. Brown hoped she could hang the same plaque in her classroom one day.
An art educator at Chelmsford’s Byam Elementary School, Ms. Brown was named the 2023 MAEA Art Educator of the Year Tuesday.
“I am rarely speechless,” said Ms. Brown, a 2001 graduate of Chelmsford High School. “I was over the moon. It’s just really special. It’s one of those professional dreams and goals I had especially here in Chelmsford.
Ms. Brown will be honored Saturday, Nov. 12 at the 2022 MAEA Conference, at which she will also present a seminar titled Fiber Arts in the Elementary Art Room. Having spent 14 years at Framingham’s Hemenway Elementary School (2006-20) and two-plus years at Byam, she has long been active within the MAEA.
“The MAEA couldn’t have found a more deserving recipient of their Elementary Art Educator of the Year (award),” said Jason Fredette, Principal of the Byam Elementary School. Amy’s love of art is contagious, and she fosters our young Byam artists to create meaningful skills, as well as pride in their accomplishments. Her contributions go beyond her excellence as an art educator.”
Ms. Brown is also a sought-after speaker on how art can be a tool for positive change and empowerment, a role she embraced in her later years at Hemenway Elementary. The result of a racial incident in 2018, she made a change in her art lessons.
“I felt we needed to respond to it and turn it around positively,” she said. “I wanted my lessons to stress messages of peace and love and anti-hate.”
Through sharing her students’ work on her social media channels – something she continues to do daily – Ms. Brown’s lessons spread throughout the Framingham community. She was featured in newspapers and the local news and honored by the Massachusetts State Senate and House of Representatives with the Women Making History Now award.
She has since become a sought-after speaker at events such as the Monserrat College of Art President’s Inauguration in 2018 – her alma mater – as well as the Leadership and Engagement at Monserrat (LEMON) Leadership Conference and MAEA conferences.
“I love my job. It brings me joy,” Ms. Brown said. “If I ever won the lottery, I would still be an art teacher.”
Ms. Brown’s work has been featured in many publications including Scholastic Magazine, Family Friendly HQ, Homeschool Top 100, Artastic and IncredibleArt.org. She also serves as the Corresponding Secretary and Social Media Coordinator for the Byam School Association (BSA).
A 2005 graduate of Monserrat College of Art and 2008 graduate of Salem State, Ms. Brown lives in Chelmsford with her husband Jeremy (CHS ’00) and their two children: Kenny, a fifth-grader at the McCarthy Middle School; and daughter Bailey, a second grader at Byam Elementary.
About Chelmsford Public Schools
The Chelmsford Public School District provides all students with multiple pathways to optimize their own potential for academic excellence, leadership, and social and emotional wellness. The mission of the Chelmsford Public Schools is to educate, engage, prepare, and empower well-rounded and knowledgeable learners to PERSEVERE through challenges, demonstrate RESPECT and INTEGRITY in their words and actions, are DEDICATED to their community, and display EMPATHY as global citizens while discovering and pursuing their full potential. This PRIDE-driven culture enables all members of the school community to support the growth and development of students. For more information, please visit www.chelmsfordschools.org.