J. Catherine Roberts
Birthplace: Norfolk, Va.
Roberts was a seventh grade life science teacher at the W.E. Waters Middle School in Portsmouth, Va., from 1975 until 2004 when she moved to Western Branch Middle School in Chesapeake, Va. She believes in hands-on learning, and often uses the Chesapeake Bay as her classroom. She teaches her students how to restore and preserve the bay's ecosystem.
Roberts has won scores of awards and grants for her devotion to the environment and her students. Her honors include: Verizon and Toshiba America Foundation grant recipient for American Shad restoration project (2001), Teacher at Sea participant with NOAA researching Pacific Hake (2001), National Science Foundation Teachers Experiencing Antarctica participant (1999), Chesapeake Bay Foundation Environmental Educator of the Year (1999), and a Fulbright Scholarship (1997).
She earned a B.S. in science education and an M.S. in biology from Old Dominion University.