This award “commemorates deep commitment to teaching and demonstrated excellence in all aspects of education,” a TAIS press release stated. Rigorous criteria includes having taught for a minimum of 20 years and being a “lifelong learner” while having a long-term positive impact on students. Kile, also head coach for Webb girls’ cross country team among other duties at the school, was praised by Upper School head Matt Macdonald. “Laura’s passion for making the study of science accessible to a wide variety of students has influenced a number of our graduates to pursue the study of science, medicine and/or engineering in college,” he said. “In every way, Laura has demonstrated the deep commitment to teaching, support of her students, inspiration for her colleagues and a sincere passion for helping those in need that one associates with the Hubert Smothers Award.” A presenter at both local and state teaching conferences, Kile also organized a K-12 science conference at Webb School last year for teachers across the state to share ideas, lessons, activities and advances in science education. Previous Webb School award honorees including Judith Prince, Mary Jo Potts, Stephanie Barnes Ogden and Elliott Stroupe.