The Mississippi American Legion Department of Mississippi “Educator of the Year” Award program serves to recognize dedicated and devoted individuals who, on a constant basis, give so much of themselves on behalf of the education of the children of Mississippi. Many programs within Mississippi schools by The American Legion and other organizations are designed to recognize and benefit the students of these school systems. However, no program recognizes the work performed by teachers, not only in assisting the organization with these programs, but more importantly recognizing the contribution made by teachers on a day-in-day-out basis. Just like veterans, teachers are unsung heroes of this nation who build our nation's future by working with the youth of today. The Department Education Committee believes the presenting of an “Educator of the Year” award within The American Legion Department of Mississippi will serve to strengthen the bonds that exist between the American Legion, the schools of Mississippi, and the administrators and educators of these schools. It is felt that this program will increase the recognition factor and exposure of The American Legion Department of Mississippi within the schools of the Mississippi and be beneficial to our efforts in Mississippi schools and for Mississippi youth in years to come. The American Legion Department of Mississippi “Educator of the Year” award is open to any educator in grades K-12 within any public, private, or parochial schools or academy in the state of Mississippi recognized by the Mississippi Department of Education. The Abner W. Cooper Memorial Post 27 of the American Legion was honored to nominate Lt Col (retired) Vann Jones, JROTC senior instructor at Lawrence County High School for consideration, and he was selected as the state “Educator of the Year” for 2022. Recently, Lt Col Jones was formally recognized at the state’s American Legion convention in Natchez. Pictured at the presentation are (l-r) American Legion Department of Mississippi commander Jerry Allhands, Nathan Jones (Lt Col Jones’ son), Lt Col Jones, his wife Robbin, District 7 commander Jimmy Smith, and Post 27 commander Dr. Tim Lea.