Charles Carpenter Fries Award

Charles Carpenter Fries (1887-1967) was a distinguished professor of linguistics at the University of Michigan from 1920 to 1958. While at the University, he founded the English Language Institute and served as its director from 1941 to 1956. One aspect of his work in linguistics focused on the best means of teaching languages to native and non-native speakers. He authored Teaching and Learning English as a Foreign Language in 1945. Among his numerous professional leadership roles, Fries served as president of the National Council of Teachers of English in 1927-28.

Charles Carpenter Fries.

Image from ELLO

The Michigan Council of Teachers of English awards the Charles Carpenter Fries Award to an outstanding English educator in recognition of his or her dedication to the profession and distinguished career towards the advancement of the teaching of English.

To be considered for the award, the ideal nominee…

  • demonstrates long and faithful service to the profession of English teaching.
  • has served in roles of distinguished leadership not only in his or her own community but also at the state and/or national level.
  • demonstrates inspirational qualities to students and colleagues.
  • is recognized for originality in some form, for having his or her own special stamp or way.
  • demonstrates academic superiority.

The nominator is responsible for submitting the nominee’s information and a brief statement describing why the nominee is deserving of the Fries Award.

Nominees may be recommended by colleagues from the local school district or an MCTE representative. Before submitting a nomination, please check the requirements for the award.

Nominees will be contacted by section chairs once the nomination window closes to request additional award materials.

Recipients will be recognized at MCTE’s spring conference.

Click here to nominate a colleague for the Fries Award.


Past Honorees

The Charles Carpenter Fries Award, first given in 1967, is MCTE’s longest-running award. Below are the honorees for the past ten years. The last link will open the list of all honorees for the Fries Award.


2023-2024* Dr. April Baker-Bell, University of Michigan
2022 No honoree
2021 Mary Anna Kruch, Northern Michigan University
2020 No honoree
2019 Jonathan Bush, Western Michigan University
2018 Christine Vonder Haar, Ferris State University
2017 Mary Juzwik, Michigan State University
2016 Cathy Fleischer, Eastern Michigan University
2015 Kia Jane Richmond, Northern Michigan University
2014 Douglas Baker, Eastern Michigan University
2013 Allen Webb, Western Michigan University
2012 Fred Barton, Michigan State University
2011 Toby Kahn-Loftus, Western Michigan University
2010 Ladene Schoen, Wayne State University
2009 Jill Van Antwerp, Grand Valley State University
2008 Troy Hicks, Central Michigan University
1967-2007 Complete List of Honorees for the Fries Award

* Beginning in 2023, honorees hold their award designation for the school year.