First-Ever Heart of Education Awards Honor 820 Educators at The Smith Center Tonight

First-Ever Heart of Education Awards Honor 820 Educators at The Smith Center TonightIn its inaugural year, The Heart of Education Awards will take place in Reynolds Hall at The Smith Center tonight, May 7, 2016, powered by The Rogers Foundation.

The special evening will honor more than 800 educators from the Clark County School District who go above and beyond for their students. Twenty of these teachers will be recognized at the ceremony and receive a cash prize of $5,000 sponsored by Wynn Las Vegas, as well as a $1,000 check to benefit a program of their choice at their school -- all topped with a commemorative Heart of Education trophy.

The celebration will also include a VIP red carpet, swag bags and a night of unparalleled entertainment, emceed by television, film and stage star Erich Bergen, who's most recently known for his role on the CBS hit, Madam Secretary. Joining Bergen on stage will be Las Vegas headliner Frankie Moreno, international singing sensation Capathia Jenkins, and others.

"By coming together to celebrate education, our community will not only shine a light on great teaching, but will make it easier to recruit great teachers and to retain our city's best teachers in the future," said Myron Martin, president and CEO of The Smith Center and creator of The Heart of Educations Awards. "The Smith Center is proud of our community partners for making this great program possible."

The invitation-only event, which celebrates outstanding teachers from various Clark County schools, was inspired by a program created by the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. A long term commitment from The Rogers Foundation made this program possible, and gracious Las Vegas community members came together to make it great. Nominated applicants were invited to share personal accounts of how they positively impacted the needs and education of a student or classroom. Nominations closed on Jan. 29, 2016, and all applications were reviewed by community leaders, education experts, sponsors and The Smith Center staff.

Major supporters of The Heart of Education Awards include: Wynn Las Vegas, AEG Live, Cirque du Soleil, the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Switch, Las Vegas Motor Speedway and NV Energy.

Community supporters of the event include: Wellhealth Quality Care, Tourneau, Bank of Nevada, Dignity Health, Downtown Summerlin, Steinberg Diagnostic Medical Imaging, UMC, WGU Nevada, Blue Heron Properties, South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa, Neiman Marcus, Silverton Casino, Town Square Las Vegas, Stitched, and Findlay Chevrolet.

The hallmark of downtown Las Vegas' 61-acre urban development known as Symphony Park, The Smith Center for the Performing Arts is a public-private partnership that opened in March 2012. Heralded as the city's Heart of the Arts, The Smith Center is an architectural triumph and long-awaited cultural achievement that educates and entertains the citizens of Southern Nevada. The $470 million world-class performing arts center offers a blend of performances by resident companies, first-run touring attractions, lectures and internationally-acclaimed performers in music, theater and dance. The five-acre campus features four performance spaces including the 2,050-seat Reynolds Hall, the 258-seat Cabaret Jazz club, the 240-seat Troesh Studio Theater and the 1.7-acre Donald W. Reynolds Symphony Park for outdoor concerts. Additionally, the campus is home to the Discovery Children's Museum that opened in March 2013. For more information about The Smith Center for the Performing Arts, please visit www.TheSmithCenter.com. Keep up with news and events on Facebook and follow The Smith Center on Twitter at @SmithCenterLV.

The Rogers Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Las Vegas, Nevada. Founded in 2013 by Jim and Beverly Rogers, The Rogers Foundation awards scholarships to individual students in Southern Nevada, grants to educational institutions in Southern Nevada, and support for artists and organizations that support the arts in Southern Nevada. Founded and based in Southern Nevada, The Rogers Foundation can be contacted at 702.657.3114 or online at therogers.foundation.

Established in 1956, Clark County School District is the fifth largest school district in the country, educating almost 75 percent of all students in Nevada with more than 320,000 students enrolled in Kindergarten through 12th grade. The district encompasses 357 schools and approximately 8,000 square miles in southern Nevada and is a minority majority student district. With more than 40,000 employees, CCSD is also the largest employer in the state.

CCSD is governed by a Board of Trustees comprised of seven members who represent different geographic regions within the county. The mission of the board is to ensure "all students progress in school and graduate prepared to succeed and contribute in a global diverse society". The district offers nationally recognized Magnet Schools and Career & Technical Academies as well as an online secondary school (Nevada Learning Academy) and several International Baccalaureate programs available to elementary, middle and high school students.

Services offered by the district also include a school police department, adult education courses, special education, and partnerships with higher education institutions and community organizations such as Vegas PBS and the Public Education Foundation. As the largest school district in Nevada, CCSD plays a pivotal role in ensuring the future success, growth and advancement of the state.

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