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LeRoy's Big Idea Finalists - 2016


LeRoy's Big Idea Finalists - 2017

LeRoy Finkel Fellowship Program


LeRoy Finkel Fellowship

The LeRoy Finkel Fellowship is intended to promote leadership in the field of educational technology. CUE "Fellows" will

  • Strengthen professional skills;
  • Develop an innovative technology-enhanced curriculum project, aligned to curriculum standards; and
  • Share their ideas and strategies through the OnCUE Journal, conferences, websites, social media and much more.


LeRoy Finkel


In 1978, LeRoy Finkel joined a group of dedicated educators to create CUE, now nationally recognized for its leadership in the promoting technology integration across the curriculum.


LeRoy recognized that technology would become a major factor in the educational process. He maintained an informed perspective and appreciation of the long view that he always eagerly and generously shared as coach and mentor in his books and articles where he praised good products, sniped at bad ones, and scrutinized every aspect of educational computing constantly reminding us to stay focused on the kids and the classroom, on teaching and learning, and on never being satisfied with anything but meeting the highest standards of excellence.


This fellowship honors those efforts and the inspirational spirit of the man.


LeRoy's Big Idea

Searching for the Next LeRoy... 

We are looking for more innovators like LeRoy and want to leverage CUE's network to share their best ideas. The Awards Committee will select four finalists from among each year's applicants to present their 'Big Idea' on stage at CUE's National Conference before a panel of edu-rock stars. On stage, each Finalist will present for 5 minutes on an even bigger version of their idea. 


The Fellow will receive $2,000 and will be given a mentor, provided registration and travel to the 2018 ISTE Conference in Chicago, and invited to write about their idea and be featured in our OnCUE publication. The three finalists will each receive $1,000 to implement their idea and will be invited to write and be featured in our OnCUE publication as well. 


How to Apply:

STEP 1: Create and upload a 60-second video of your lesson idea. It should be an innovative technology-enhanced curriculum project that is standards-aligned, replicable and relevant. We aren't judging the production quality of the video - just the idea. Excite us with your idea, share your students trying your idea - we don't want to watch talking heads! The idea should cost no more than $1,000, but have potential to scale up to a bigger idea that could be funded at full fellowship level of $2,000 should you become the next LeRoy Finkel Fellow.


STEP 2: Complete the online application, including a brief (500 words) explanation of your idea, including standards-alignment, student impact and how you'd spend the $1,000 budget. Don't get into your $2,000 version of the idea just yet - save that for the stage! Hit submit and you are DONE!


View Rubric



Any part or full-time K-20 educator that is a member of CUE working within California or Nevada is eligible to apply. To be considered as a finalist or for the full fellowship, the applicant must be willing to travel to Palm Springs and present their idea on stage at the CUE National Conference in March. The selected Fellow should be willing and able to perform the duties and attend the events below before applying.

Finalist Awards

  • $1,000 award (applicable taxes apply)
  • Complimentary registration for the 2018 Spring CUE Conference in Palm Springs
  • Invitation to present your Big Idea on stage during the LeRoy's Big Idea: The Finalists session
  • Inclusion in 'LeRoy Finkel Finalist Update' column of OnCUE Journal
  • Two 30-minute coaching sessions with a professional presentation coach.


Fellowship Award

  • $2,000 award (applicable taxes apply)
  • Registration and travel expenses to the ISTE Conference for the current year.
  • Guidance for one year of a professional mentor, recommended by the CUE Board.
  • Invitation to write a feature article for OnCUE Journal in the year following the award.


Please note, all Finalist and Fellowship Awards are subject to appropriate federal & state taxes. CUE does not cover travel or other expenses (other than event registration) for finalists to attend the Spring Conference.


Past Fellows:

  • 1995: Marie Roberts, D.J. Perry, Connie Hendrix
  • 1996: Georgeann Hardy
  • 1997: Ana M. Garcia, Christina Wilder
  • 2001: Barry Sovel
  • 2002: Gayle Britt
  • 2006: Barbara Busalacchi
  • 2008: Jerome Burg
  • 2013: Kate Petty
  • 2016: Jonathan Natividad
  • 2017: Kim Calderon 

To Contribute
Recommended donation levels:

    • $20,000 - Laureate (max of 1/year) - Presentation of LeRoy Finkel Fellow live on stage! (inc. all benefits below)
    • $10,000 - Hero - (max of 3/year) - Introduced to the audience at "LeRoy's Big Idea" session. (inc. all benefits below)
    • $5,000 - Champion - (max of 5/year) - Reserved seating at session + keynotes (inc. all benefits below)
    • $2,500 - Advocate - Name listed on website (inc. all benefits below)Donate
    • $1000 - Supporter - Comp registration to National CUE Conference


Donations to support the LeRoy Finkel Fellowship can be sent to:
LeRoy Finkel Fellowship Fund
c/o CUE
877 Ygnacio Valley Road, Suite 200
Walnut Creek CA 94596

LRF Blogs:



Student Learners become Leaders of Learning  – a LeRoy Finkel Fellowship Follow-up                         


 Leroy's Big Idea 2017 Finalists



 Leroy's Big Idea 2016 Finalists