The best teachers shine as role models for their students and colleagues. The ones who burn the brightest are recognized each year by the Ohio Department of Education as Teachers of Ohio Representing Character and Heart.
Cloverleaf High School chemistry teacher Marty Ryan is one of five teachers in Ohio to be honored with a 2021 TORCH Award. He received the news in a surprise virtual presentation on May 18 attended by Cloverleaf staff, ODE director of the Office of Educator Effectiveness Yenetta Harper, and ODE state coordinator of Teacher Recognition Programs Angela Dicke. Tonya Thorbahn -- a Findlay City Schools teacher and 2020 Ohio Teacher of the Year Finalist who served on the selection committee -- read excerpts from the award nomination submitted by Cloverleaf High School Principal Jamie Lormeau:
“To be a student in Mr. Ryan’s class is to be dazzled by his sense of humor and love of science. Any observer would immediately notice that he really is having a great time when he is engaging with students. It is difficult to be in his classroom and not get taken in by the joy of learning and curiosity that he radiates.”
Ryan is in his 36th year of teaching at Cloverleaf High School, where he chairs the science department and has served as boys varsity basketball coach. He received a bachelor of science in secondary science education from The Ohio State University and earned a master’s degree in instructional technology from Walden University. Outside school, Ryan enjoys spending time with his wife Kristina and their four children, traveling, camping, “watching Ohio State beat Michigan,” and working on his circa 1830 home in Granger Township.
Thorbahn called Ryan a veteran teacher who never rests on his years of experience. Instead, he continues to grow and learn as a person and a professional. Ryan has been known to schedule online meetings with students on the weekends to help them study and to stop on the roadside to assist co-workers having car trouble.
“Mr. Ryan, congratulations,” Dicke said. “You are the epitome of what a Teacher of Ohio Representing Character and Heart is all about.”
Ryan was moved by the surprise and responded with characteristic humility.
“I consider it an honor to enjoy what I do and love what I do,” Ryan said. “Then to get recognized for it like this is unbelievable … It’s a great staff I get to work with here at Cloverleaf. It’s a great place to be and I’m just so thankful right now.”Click HERE to visit the ODE website for more on Mr. Ryan and fellow TORCH Award honorees.