The Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel hosts many large conferences and conventions organized by companies with headquarters out of state, but we’re also an ideal venue for smaller, more intimate meetings and events held by many local corporations here in in the Denver metro area. One of these events is the Apple Awards, the biggest annual fundraiser for the Douglas County Education Foundation (DCEF).
This is the seventh year for the Apple Awards, which shines the spotlight on outstanding educators throughout the Douglas County School District. In addition to honoring teachers, the event raises proceeds totaling more than $500,000 for collaborative programs benefiting the classrooms and students in the district.
The Apple Awards honor excellence in teaching, and more than 5,600 nominations representing 1,650 different teachers were submitted online by Douglas County students, parents, staff and community members. While all nominees were highly qualified and truly inspirational, each school in the district could select only one teacher to represent their school for a total of 19 finalists – all wonderful examples of how teachers touch lives on a daily basis. The final winners – one primary teacher and one secondary teacher – receive a cash award from the DCEF as well as a gift from their school community.
On March 17, the Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel rolled out the red carpet – literally. The finalists were treated like celebrities as they arrived at the event in limousines and were escorted down a red carpet leading into the hotel. The evening was designed to replicate a Hollywood-style black-tie affair (think the Grammys or Oscars) and included dinner, entertainment and a dance party featuring Boulder-based Funkiphino, a 12-piece cover band that plays funk, soul and R&B.