FOUR STATES AREA – Six Four State educators were selected Wednesday as McDonald’s Outstanding Educators.

Crystal Boyt, with Benton Elementary in Neosho received a $1,000 McDonald’s Outstanding Educator Award.

The award honors educators who exhibit the ultimate dedication to their students and go the extra mile to contribute to the improvement of education.

Other recipients are:

  • Samie Jo Watson, Grove Upper Elementary
  • Katie Hutson, Grove Early Childhood Center
  • Amber Cooney, Joplin High School
  • Trina Ashmore, Northeast Elementary, Arma, Kan.
  • Amber Hribar, Northeast Junior High,  Arma, Kan.

These educators received a $100 Visa gift card to use toward their classroom; a coffee mug; certificates and McDonald’s coupons to provide to parents with outstanding students throughout the year.

“Katie Hutson is an incredible kindergarten teacher,” said Julie Bloss, Grove Early Childhood Center principal. “Students adore Mrs. Hutson because she makes learning fun and engaging.”

“I’m so happy these educators are being recognized with this well-deserved honor,” Bloss said.

The winners were selected from a pool of more than 500 nominations.

Since launching this award in 2020, locally-owned McDonald’s restaurants have now given more than $37,000 in cash and prizes to 185 educators across local communities.

“We’re so proud to reward and recognize these deserving educators for their hard work with the youth in our communities,” said Thomas Nichols, a local McDonald’s Owner/Operator in a prepared statement.

Nichols partnered with other area McDonald’s operators including Phil Close and Alex Maffei to honor the following area educators: