ASCD created the OYEA program in 2002 to recognize creative and committed teachers and administrators under the age of 40 who are making a difference in children’s lives. A panel of diverse education professionals selected Garcia and Twentey as the 2013 OYEA winners from a large pool of candidates nominated by educators across the globe.
The winners will each receive a $10,000 cash award and an ASCD Institutional membership. ASCD's OYEA program provides winners and a cadre of honorees with opportunities for leadership skill building, professional development, networking, and sharing best practices with one another and the ASCD community.
Joshua Garcia has dedicated his career to closing the achievement gap and serving the whole child. In his role as deputy superintendent in Federal Way Public Schools near Tacoma, Garcia prioritized the creation of a flexible learning program to meet the needs of all students by introducing International Baccalaureate and advanced placement (AP) programs at the middle and high school levels, as well as led the implementation of Web 2.0 technology tools and social media programs. To set a culture of high expectations in the school district, Garcia has also employed an "opt out" versus "opt in" strategy for AP courses, which over the course of three years has resulted in an 72 percent enrollment increase by juniors and seniors taking at least one AP class.