Outstanding N.C. Teachers Receive More Than $200,000 at Raleigh Bright Ideas Grant Award Celebration

Five of North Carolina’s electric cooperatives awarded more than $200,000 in Bright Ideas education grants to 124 teachers from the Triangle and surrounding areas at the 18th annual Bright Ideas Grant Awards Luncheon on Friday, Nov. 19. The luncheon celebrated teachers from 22 counties in and around the Triangle, and was hosted by Central Electric, Piedmont Electric, South River EMC, Wake Electric and North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives.

Teachers and school administrators at the luncheon received Bright Ideas education grants that will benefit students in Alamance, Caswell, Chatham, Clinton, Cumberland, Dare, Durham, Franklin, Granville, Harnett, Johnston, Lee, Lenoir, Moore, Nash, Orange, Person, Sampson, Vance, Wake, Wayne and Wilson counties.

“We are thrilled to celebrate exceptional educators committed to exceeding expectations to promote classroom ingenuity,” said Hailey Rodriguez, communications and community relations specialist for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “These teachers are truly the best of the best, and we are proud to partner with them as they work to expand student success by implementing innovative and engaging learning opportunities.”


Troy Kryzalka, former North Carolina educator and creator of Number Drummer, delivered the luncheon’s keynote address. Drumsticks in hand, audience members created a rhythmic performance that demonstrated multiplication, division and fractions. Each teacher was able to bring the lesson back to their classrooms so students can explore the connection between math and music. Troy has delivered his Number Drummer program to thousands of students and educators across the U.S. and has been recognized and awarded by Yale University for his innovative teaching approach.

The Raleigh awards luncheon is one of several ways North Carolina’s 26 not-for-profit electric cooperatives are recognizing grant-winning teachers for innovation in education. In total, more than $600,000 in Bright Ideas grants will be awarded to teachers statewide by North Carolina’s 26 electric cooperatives in 2021. The Bright Ideas education grant program, sponsored by North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives, strives to improve education in North Carolina classrooms by awarding grants to K-12 teachers for innovative, classroom-based projects that would not otherwise be funded. North Carolina teachers can learn more at ncbrightideas.com.