Newsroom Category: History

Alabama educator nominated for National History Day ‘Teacher of the Year’

May 10, 2022 — The Alabama Humanities Alliance has nominated Blakeney Doggette of Phillips Preparatory School in Mobile, Alabama, for the Patricia Behring Teacher of the Year award. The National History Day award is sponsored by Patricia Behring in recognition of the pivotal role that teachers play in the lives of students.

Each of the 58 National History Day affiliates may nominate exceptional educators; Blakeney Doggette is this year’s nominee from Alabama. All nominees receive $500 and are eligible for a $10,000 award if they win the national prize. Nominees demonstrate a commitment to engaging students in historical learning through the innovative use of primary sources, implementation of active learning strategies to foster historical thinking skills, and participation in the National History Day contest.

“This award recognizes the very best educators from across the nation and beyond,” said National History Day Executive Director Dr. Cathy Gorn. “These educators are leaders and innovators in the teaching of history, and we are all the more impressed because of the extended difficult teaching circumstances due to the pandemic during the last year. I wish to congratulate Ms. Doggette on her well-deserved nomination.”

The national winner will be selected by a committee of experienced teachers and historians, and announced on June 18, 2022, at National History Day’s awards ceremony (to be held virtually again due to COVID-19). Nominees’ work must clearly illustrate the development and use of creative teaching methods that engage students in history, and help them make exciting discoveries about the past.

“It’s teachers like Mrs. Doggette who make History Day such a meaningful and valuable experience for our students statewide,” says Rachel Hartsell, Alabama History Day coordinator for the Alabama Humanities Alliance. “We’re thankful for all Blakeney did to advance the Alabama History Day program at her school. And we know we’re very fortunate to have many dedicated educators statewide that we could have nominated for this national award.”


About National History Day
NHD is a nonprofit organization based in College Park, Maryland, that seeks to improve the teaching and learning of history. The National History Day Contest was established in 1974 and currently engages more than half a million students every year in conducting original research on historical topics of interest. Students present their research as a documentary, exhibit, paper, performance, or website. Projects compete first at the local and affiliate levels, where the top entries are invited to the National Contest at the University of Maryland at College Park. NHD is sponsored in part by, HISTORY®, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Park Service, Southwest Airlines, the Crown Family Foundation, The Better Angels Society, the Pritzker Military Museum & Library and the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation. For more information, visit


About Alabama History Day
Alabama History Day is a state-level affiliate of National History Day, a year-long project-based learning program focused on historical research, interpretation, and creative expression – open to all students in grades 6-12. By participating in Alabama History Day, students become writers, filmmakers, web designers, playwrights and artists as they create unique contemporary expressions of history. The experience culminates in a statewide contest in the spring and an annual national competition in the nation’s capital in June. Alabama History Day is an Alabama Humanities Alliance program. For more information, visit


About the Alabama Humanities Alliance
Founded in 1974, the nonprofit Alabama Humanities Alliance serves as a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. AHA promotes impactful storytelling, lifelong learning and civic engagement. We provide Alabamians with opportunities to connect with our diverse cultures and to see each other as fully human. Through our grantmaking, we help scholars, communities and cultural nonprofits create humanities-based projects that are accessible to all Alabamians — from literary festivals and documentary films to museum exhibitions and research collections. Learn more at

$50K to grow Alabama History Day

BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA / Sept. 23, 2021 — The Alabama Humanities Alliance has been awarded $50,000 to expand and diversify participation in Alabama History Day, its history competition that engages students statewide (grades 6-12) in robust and creative historical research.

The new funding comes from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and its special initiative, “A More Perfect Union,” which is distributing $2.8 million to humanities councils across the United States. The Alabama Humanities Alliance is a state affiliate of the NEH and Alabama History Day is the state affiliate contest of National History Day.

With this gift, the Alabama Humanities Alliance can engage more students, teachers, and school systems in Alabama History Day. The goal is to broaden the reach of History Day into areas of the state that have been underrepresented, including underserved communities such as Alabama’s rural Black Belt region and urban, inner city schools. Making Alabama History Day accessible to more students statewide helps to ensure that the research presented is as robust and diverse as Alabama itself.

The next Alabama History Day is scheduled to take place at Auburn University at Montgomery on April 8, 2022. Winners move on to compete in National History Day, held each year in Washington, D.C. The theme for next year’s competition is “Debate & Diplomacy in History: Successes, Failures, Consequences.”

Alabama History Day participants and potential participants — teachers, school administrators, judges, students, and parents — are invited to join our Alabama History Day Facebook Group.

About “A More Perfect Union”
The NEH’s “A More Perfect Union” initiative helps to demonstrate and enhance the critical role the humanities play in our nation and support projects that help Americans commemorate the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in 2026. The initiative supports projects that explore, reflect on, and tell the stories of our quest for a more just, inclusive, and sustainable society throughout our history. Learn more

About Alabama History Day
Alabama History Day is a competition that engages students in historical research and dynamic storytelling. Each year, National History Day announces an annual theme that helps students pick a research topic of their own choosing. Students then present their findings through one of five mediums: a paper, a documentary, a website, a dramatic performance, or an exhibit. This enables students to become writers, filmmakers, web designers, playwrights, and artists as they create unique, contemporary expressions of history. Learn more on our Alabama History Day site.