Transforming science education through research-driven innovation

Celebrating Cindy Gay, Recipient of the Boettcher Foundation’s 2022 Alumni Recognition Award

December 19, 2022

Within BSCS, Cindy Gay is known as the champion of “cool science.” Her cool science sessions have been a highlight at staff meetings since 2017. And over the years, she’s sparked our curiosity with lessons on everything from watermelon snow (Chlamydomonas nivalis) and climate change to Beatrix Potter (yes, the author). 

There’s a pattern to these sessions. They all include great science, an interesting story, and a connection to history, art, food, or other common phenomena that everyone can relate to somehow.

Cindy has a unique way of engaging and inspiring audiences while teaching. And that’s what makes her such an invaluable science educator—within and far beyond our organization. 

During her time at BSCS, Cindy has led professional learning experiences for thousands of science leaders and teachers. She has also contributed to the development of several instructional materials programs, including our brand new high school biology course, BSCS Biology: Understanding for Life

We love Cindy. Science educators and students across the country love Cindy. And so it didn’t surprise us at all to learn that the Boettcher Foundation also happens to love Cindy. 

The Foundation has named Cindy one of two 2022 Alumni Recognition Award recipients. Out of nearly 3,000 alumni, Cindy stands out as someone who embodies the Foundation’s ethos of service, leadership, and giving back to others. 

“We talk about the ripple effect a lot at Boettcher and how one person can have an outsized impact on their communities,” says Chris Lowell, Communications Specialist at the Boettcher Foundation. “Cindy Gay is a great example of how a single individual can have a transformational impact. Ensuring more students have access to an equitable science education is directly preparing the next generation with knowledge that will only become more important in the 21st century. Boettcher Foundation sincerely thanks her for her work.”

In the spirit of continuing to give back, the Foundation has awarded Cindy $1,000 to direct to a nonprofit of her choice. She chose us—which really means she chose science educators and learners. Cindy has allocated the $1,000 to BSCS’s Access Fund, designed to bring our proven programs to underserved districts and schools across the country.

We believe we can speak for the larger BSCS community when we say how proud we are to work alongside Cindy. She embodies our values—community, curiosity, collaboration, growth, social justice, and impact—in every way. And we are so grateful for her.

Read more about this award and Cindy’s story.