Tacoma teacher wins prestigious Milken Educator Award

TACOMA -- A Lincoln High School teacher in Tacoma tried to keep his cool Tuesday after learning he had won what some call the "Oscar" for teaching.

His students weren't quite as calm at a morning assembly.

They cheered and hugged their beloved social studies teacher, Nathan Gibbs-Bowling, who had won the nationwide award.

Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., was there to help present him with the award, which includes $25,000 in cash.

The award is aimed at attracting and retaining high-quality educators. The award recognizes exceptional work by Gibbs-Bowling, who is known as a demanding teacher in his social studies classes. The criteria for winning includes exceptional educational talent, and an engaging and inspiring presence that motivates and impacts students.

Gibbs-Bowling joins some 40 secondary school educators across the country who will be honored this year.

Gibbs-Bowling lives in the Lincoln High neighborhood and says he wants to prepare students who will give back to the neighborhood as adults.