Westfield educators nominated for prestigious “2021 Herb Kohl Fellowship” awards


The Westfield School District is recognizing. Daniel Mahn, Jeff Napp, and Dr. Dan Steward for their nominations for the 2021 Herb Kohl Teacher Fellowship Awards.  The Kohl Fellowship Award Program serves to recognize teachers for their excellence in the classroom, innovative teaching practices, and commitment to bettering the lives of their students through education.  Winners of the Kohl Award receive a $6,000 personal award and an additional $6,000 to use at their school for projects of their choice.  Kohl winners are also automatically entered into the Wisconsin Teacher of the Year program.

Daniel Mahn is in his 11th year of teaching overall, and his sixth year at Westfield High School.   Mahn earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and is currently pursuing his Master’s Degree in Educational Administration with a concentration in Principal and Curriculum Director Licenses from the University of Wisconsin-Superior.  Mahn is a problem-solver who constantly finds new ways to help his students learn and appreciate math.  

Throughout his years in Westfield, countless students have been able to achieve success in math who had not previously been able to comprehend the material.  It is due to Mahn’s persistence and never-give-up attitude that so many of his students develop a confidence they had never before experienced.

In addition to his teaching duties, Mahn is the Advisor of the math team and serves on a number of committees in the school.  As the resident “Problem Solver,” MMahn is constantly sought out by his colleagues for assistance with technology, curriculum, scheduling, and any number of issues for which they need assistance.

Jeff Napp is in his 42nd year of teaching overall, and his 37th in Westfield.  Napp earned his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville in Art.  He earned his Master’s Degree in Educational Professional Development in Art & Health Education from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. He also served his country in the United States Army.

Napp is known in Westfield as a teacher of tremendous energy and enthusiasm, and as a person who goes out of his way to ensure students of all interest and ability levels have the opportunity to experience Art education.  It is not uncommon for Napp to run two or three classes simultaneously so students are able to fit specialized Art classes into their schedules. In recognition of his exceptional career achievements, Napp was inducted into the Westfield Pioneers Wall of Fame in 2019.

Dan Steward is in his 17th year of teaching overall, and his 15th in Westfield.  Dr. Steward earned his Bachelor’s Degree from Marian University in Music Education.  He earned his Master’s Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Trombone Performance and earned his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Curriculum & Instruction.

Dr. Steward teaches Middle School Band, Middle School Jazz Ensemble, Beginner Band to elementary school students, and is team-teaching High School Band this year so the Band could be split into two sections due to COVID-19. Dr. Steward is also known for his trademark look – he dresses in black from head to toe on a daily basis, his love of NBA basketball, and his love of trivia.

Mahn, Napp, and Dr. Steward join previous Westfield nominees: Jeremy Akey, David Briggs, Sheri Cujak, Nikki Kopach, Mary Mades, Quinn Shirley, Jeff Steckbauer, Lori Temanson, and Sara Watson. Five Westfield educators have won the award in previous years: David Moody (2016 Kohl Outstanding Principal Leadership Award), Stacey Oliphant (2020 Kohl Teacher Fellowship), Fred Posthuma (1993 Kohl Teacher Fellowship), Kristi Romberg (2020 Kohl Teacher Fellowship), and Julianne West (2014 Kohl Teacher Fellowship).  Recent student winners include Lily Wagner (2019 Kohl Student Excellence Award), and Camden Stampfl (2020 Kohl Student Initiative Award).