The Lafayette Education Foundation surprised 16 teachers Thursday with the news they are finalists for the foundation’s Teacher Awards.

The annual awards program honors teachers at Lafayette public, private and parochial schools for their dedication to the profession. The 16 were selected from hundreds of teachers who were nominated by current or former students, parents or others in the community.

The teachers will be honored during the foundation’s annual Academy Awards-style show scheduled 7 p.m. Jan. 20 at the Heymann Performing Arts Center. Entertainment will be provided by the Northside High School choir, under the direction of 2015 Teacher Awards finalist Sarah Clavelle.

Tickets are $5 for students and educators and $10 for general admission. Tickets are available at the Heymann box office, (337) 291-5555, Ticketmaster outlets and at

This year’s finalists are as follows:


Darmecia W. Crane, fifth-grade teacher at Milton Elementary/Middle School

Ashley Jolet, special education teacher at Katharine Drexel

Mayme Suire, fourth-grade teacher at Family Life Christian Academy

Charlie West, fourth-grade teacher at Katharine Drexel


Vincent Robert Hicks, sixth- through eighth-grade physical education/basketball coach at David Thibodaux STEM Magnet Academy

Michael Karnath, sixth- through eighth-grade modular tech/woodshop teacher at Youngsville Middle School

Monique Walker, seventh-grade English teacher at L.J. Alleman Middle

Trudie Wolking, special education teacher at Cathedral Carmel


Sandra Laborde Broussard, ninth- through 11th-grade speech and debate teacher at Comeaux High

Mel Didier, 11th- and 12th-grade Western civilization history teacher at Comeaux High

Shauna LeBlanc, 10th- and 11th-grade biology and chemistry teacher at Lafayette High

Charles Young, ninth- through 12th-grade NJROTC teacher at Comeaux High


Ashley Cagle, kindergarten teacher at J. Wallace James Elementary

Lian Cheramie, ninth- through 12th-grade talented theatre teacher at Lafayette High

Mary Pierce, special education teacher at Myrtle Place Elementary

Sandra Thompson, kindergarten teacher at Episcopal School of Acadiana