Retired High School Teacher Hank Kauffman Named One of Three Finalists to Represent St. Louis Cardinals as All-Star Teacher - Tucson News Now

Retired High School Teacher Hank Kauffman Named One of Three Finalists to Represent St. Louis Cardinals as All-Star Teacher

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SOURCE Spot Trading LLC

Voting Open until June 29

ST. LOUIS, June 12, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Hank Kauffman, a mathematics teacher for 52 years at Ladue High School in St. Louis, has been named one of three finalists to represent the St. Louis Cardinals in the "People [Magazine] All-Star Teachers" Contest presented by Target.

One of 90 finalists across all 30 Major League Baseball (MLB) teams nationwide, Kauffman is among thousands nominated for the honor as a teacher who has made a difference in the lives of their students and communities. The contest culminates in the All-Star® Game at Target Field in Minnesota on July 15, where each Major League team will send an All-Star teacher.

"I am so truly honored to have been named a finalist for this contest; other than my wonderful family, there is nothing which has brought me more joy through the years than teaching," said Kauffman, who retired a few years ago.

Voting is now open, and the contest closes at 11:59 p.m. ET on June 29. A former student and successful financial services entrepreneur nominated Kauffman, his favorite teacher, and is leading the charge to generate votes for him.

Rob Merrilees, who had Kauffman as both an algebra and calculus teacher, said: "It is with much pride that I nominated my teacher and long-time friend, Hank Kauffman, for this prestigious award. He exemplifies the very best our country has to offer in its educators, and he's a huge Cardinals baseball fan to boot!"

Merrilees, who founded Spot Trading LLC, now one of the nation's leading proprietary trading firms, said that Kauffman had a profound impact on his life – so much so that the entrepreneur asked Kauffman to officiate his wedding ceremony, and he named his son after the public school educator. Merrilees believes that without Kauffman's influence on his life, he may never have founded his firm 15 years ago.

No stranger to receiving accolades for his teaching, Kauffman has already won an outstanding teaching award from the University of Chicago and has been included in Who's Who Among America's Teachers. He estimates that he has taught between 5,000 and 6,000 students during the course of his career, which began at Ladue in 1961. He continued to teach into his early 70s. Through most of his tenure, Kauffman was a widower, raising three children of his own.

Former colleague and retired Ladue principal, Bill Raisch, who worked closely with the teacher for more than half of Kauffman's tenure, said: "I never heard a single negative comment regarding Hank Kauffman in all the years I have known him – only accolades of the highest order, from staff, teachers and students. He always wanted them to be the best they could possibly be, not only as math students, but also as developing young adults, each with distinct potential."

Kauffman, a perennial favorite among students, had a style which allowed him to connect with his students readily in the classroom.  A fellow teacher of Kauffman's, Edie Tashma, said: "There is not one kid Hank taught who didn't love him...even the ones who almost failed! By any measure, Hank is the most successful teacher I have ever known."

To learn more about the contest, go to AllStarTeachers.com.

To vote for Hank Kauffman, visit http://mlb.mlb.com/allstar-teachers/vote.jsp?team=stl.

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