FSI Office, the official office supplier of the Carolina Panthers, recently teamed up with the Carolina Panthers organization to select a recipient for the fourth annual “Teacher of the Year” award. This year, FSI Office received over 900 applications submitted on behalf of the friends, family members and co-workers of those nominated. Over the course of two and a half months, FSI Office and the Carolina Panthers organization chose 13 teachers, one per week, from North and South Carolina, honoring each winner “Teacher of the Week.”
The honorees received various classroom supplies on behalf of FSI Office, complimentary pre-game passes and tickets to attend a Carolina Panthers game at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte on Dec. 15, 2013. In addition to the game day activities, one of the 13 teachers would be granted the honor of “Teacher of The Year.” Among the 13 winners was Anson County’s own, Patricia Parson Cole, a fourth grade teacher at Morven Elementary School, was chosen to be honored as a Teacher of the Week by the two organizations on Nov. 24, 2013.
Cole is the daughter of Mary H. Parsons and the late Lonzo Parsons. She attended Bowman High School and graduated with Sum Cum Laude (Highest Honors) from North Carolina A&T State University in 1982. She is also a Who’s Who Among American College Students and Who’s Who Among American Teachers. Cole has been employed with the Anson County School System for the last 16 years and is presently a fourth grade teacher at Morven Elementary School where Howard McLean (once Principal at MES) was instrumental in hiring her. She also has been employed by DODDS (Department of Defense Dependent Schools), while travelling with her late husband, Samuel R. Cole Sr. during his military career. She has four children: Stephanie, Samuel Junior, Rachel and Joshua. She is also the Pastor of Faith Christian Center, Inc., located in Wadesboro.
Cole was nominated by a community member who submitted a moving application expressing admiration of Mrs. Cole’s tireless dedication to parenting, educating and of course, rooting for “her Carolina Panthers.” The application was well received and accordingly, FSI Office and the Carolina Panthers organization awarded a pleasantly surprised Cole “Teacher of the Week” just prior to Thanksgiving break. Representative Jerry Taylor (FSI School Supply Specialist) visited Cole at MES and presented her with a basket of classroom supplies. He informed her that she would receive pre-game passes and tickets to attend the Panthers versus the New York Jets game as well as participate in a special presentation in which one of the 13 honorees would be announced “Teacher of The Year.” On Dec. 15, 2013, an excited Cole attended her first Panther football game with her daughter Rachel. Cole is an avid follower of professional football and a faithful fan of the Carolina Panthers. She expressed her thorough enjoyment while observing the Panthers’ pregame warm up as well as experiencing the excitement of viewing the game live. The honorees and their guests were treated to the comforts of a luxury game day suite including a menu of delicious delicacies.
The excitement continued when during the special first quarter presentation (held on the Panthers sideline), Kim Leazer (presenter for FSI Office), members of the FSI organization, and representatives of the Carolina Panthers organization announced that Patricia Cole was the winner and recipient of the 2013 Teacher of the Year award. Leazer praised Cole for her positivity as a teacher and an individual and encouraged her to continue on as a positive influence, teacher and role model to her students. In addition to her honors, Cole was awarded a $5,000 check on behalf of FSI Office that will benefit Morven Elementary School, an official NFL football inscribed with her name and title (Teacher of the Year). She was also presented with a new office chair and an Apple iPad on Dec. 18, 2013.
Cole gives God the praise for this special recognition and wishes to thank Dr. Joslyn Allen (Principal of MES), the faculty and staff at Morven Elementary School for all they do to help Anson County students achieve educational success. She thanks the Panthers organization, Jimmy Godwin (founder of FSI) and Diane Godwin (president of FSI), as well as their daughter Kim Leazer and her husband Jim Leazer, who hosted the activities and presented the awards.
Cole states, “A recognition of me (by FSI, Inc. and the Carolina Panthers Organization), is a recognition to all of the teachers and employees in the Anson County School System who work hard every day to ensure that our students get the quality education they deserve. I am honored and humbled to be chosen for such an award so prestigious as Teacher of the Year. Thank you to FSI Office and the Carolina Panthers organization. This has been an event I will always remember.”