For Immediate Release
Contact: Makinya Ward, 650-572-4339

Atwater, CA High School Teacher Wins $2,500 California Casualty Academic Award


San Mateo, CA, August 21, 2013. . . California Casualty has presented a $2,500 Academic Award to high school teacher, Elaine Tam, for her class at Atwater High School in Atwater, CA. Tam’s name was randomly selected from a pool of more than 15,000 entries from around the nation.

Elaine Tam was all smiles when her name was announced as the latest California Casualty Academic Award winner during a back to school teacher staff meeting. Fellow teachers were present and pleased to see one of their own receive a check for $2,500 to use for school supplies and activities. When asked what she would do with the money, Elaine replied, “I will use it for transportation to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and if there’s money left over, I will buy classroom supplies.” Tam went on to say transportation has been a hindrance to field trips because of the high cost of bus charter services. For perspective, the cost can be upwards of $800 per bus.

Elaine Tam grew up in Atwater, and has been teaching for thirteen years. She began her teaching career at a local junior high before accepting a position six years ago as a biology teacher at Atwater High School.

It is no secret that teachers have felt the budget cuts in recent years. What many may not know is that on average, teachers spend $500 of their personal money to fund classroom materials and supplies.  Elaine confessed that she too has spent her personal money to support her students.  

“California Casualty, which has 62 years of ties to public education, wanted to give at least one educator some relief – and to thank him or her for the dedication and sacrifice made daily on the job”, said Senior Vice President Doug Goldberg.  The Academic Award contest was launched late in 2012 and will continue to run through 2013. The next winner will be randomly drawn in December.

K-12 public school teachers can review complete rules and enter the Academic Award giveaway at Eligibility requires membership in the NEA, CTA or AEA.

California Casualty is a 99-year-old policyholder-owned company headquartered in San Mateo, CA with service centers in Arizona, Colorado and Kansas. Learn more about its auto and home insurance for educators, firefighters, peace officers, and nurses at