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Akers ‘03,’07 named Muscogee County School District’s 2024 Teacher of the Year - Columbus State University Skip to Main Content

Akers ‘03,’07 named Muscogee County School District’s 2024 Teacher of the Year

May 13, 2024

Headshot of Christie Akers

Two-time alumna Christie Akers has been named the 2024 Muscogee County School District’s Teacher of the Year by the Muscogee Educational Excellence Foundation (MEEF). She teaches English, AP Seminar and mythology at Northside High School.

A Columbus native and Columbus High School graduate, Akers holds two degrees from Columbus State: a bachelor’s degree in English language and literature she earned in 2003, and a master’s in secondary education in English language arts she completed in 2007.

“I get to witness the growth in high school and cheer [students] on along the way,” she said of her educational philosophy. “I love interacting with my students daily, and how they challenge me to think about things differently. … This is what I love about teaching—bearing witness to the growth and development that happens when a child feels safe and cared for in their environment.”

“Christie has a distinct ability to engage her students. Her understanding of a teenager’s mind is remarkable,” selection committee chair Josh Reynolds said. “Whether a student is acting like a silly kid or needing help and guidance as a young adult—Christie has developed such good relationships with every one of her students, they trust her to know what they need. It’s clear she has earned the trust and respect of all her students.”

Past MCSD Teacher of the Year and two-time Columbus State alumna Vanessa Ellis described Akers as “… the type of educator who not only inspires her students, but empowers them. She has created conditions in her classroom in which students are highly engaged and take ownership of their learning. And she loves and believes in all students as learners and as humans.”

Akers began teaching in 2006 after serving as a corporate trainer for Columbus-based TSYS, a Global Payments company. Her 18-year career—all in the Muscogee County School District—includes teaching English at Shaw High School, academic coaching at several middle and high schools, and serving as Veterans Memorial Middle School’s academic dean before her current duties at Northside.

According to the Muscogee County School District, more than half of the system’s 5,500 educators, school counselors and administrators hold degrees from Columbus State. That is partly due to its “CSU Teaching Contract Guarantee” partnership launched in 2019. The guarantee ensures a system teaching contract for any Columbus State teacher education graduate who passes the student teaching component of their degree and meets Georgia Professional Standards Commission induction certification requirements.


Akers was chosen from 55 Teacher of the Year honorees representing each Muscogee County School District school. More than two-thirds of this year’s honorees are Columbus State graduates, and a quarter hold two or more degrees from the university.

MEEF’s selection committee, comprising Columbus business and education leaders, evaluates the applications to narrow the field to 10 semifinalists. The committee then interviews those semifinalists to determine its three finalists, which the committee then observes in the classroom to determine its top teacher for that year.

The Muscogee Educational Excellence Foundation is a nonprofit organization founded in 1996 and dedicated to fostering educational excellence by recognizing and rewarding innovative and exceptionally effective teachers in the Muscogee County School District. Led by a volunteer board of directors, the foundation has awarded more than $3 million to district teachers through financial incentives in the Teacher of the Year program, the MEEF Grant program, the MEEF Endowment Fund, the STEM T3 program, the Harvard Fellows program, and the Buntin Scholars Program.

Media contacts:
Columbus State University: Michael Tullier, Executive Director, Strategic Communication + Marketing, 706.507.8729,
Muscogee Educational Excellence Foundation: Marquette McKnight, Administrator, 706.660.9702,
Muscogee County School District: Kimberly Wright, Director of Communication, 706.668.0741, 

Related news coverage:
‘They’re my Loveys.’ A visit to the Muscogee County Teacher of the Year’s classroom (Ledger-Enquirer, May 16, 2024)
And the winner of the Muscogee County 2024 Teacher of the Year award is . . . (Ledger-Enquirer, May 9, 2024)
In surprise classroom visits, Muscogee County Teacher of the Year finalists are announced (Ledger-Enquirer, March 14, 2024)
The 2024 Teacher of the Year in Muscogee County will be one of these 10 semifinalists (Ledger-Enquirer, Feb. 23, 2024)
Who will be Teacher of the Year for Muscogee County schools? These are the nominees (Ledger-Enquirer, Jan. 26, 2024)