TMA Awards Its First Butler-Cooley Excellence in Teaching Award to a Teacher Outside of North America

Oct 26, 2011

(TMA Global)

SAN DIEGO - The Turnaround Management Association (TMA) presented the Butler-Cooley Excellence in Teaching Award Wednesday to two teachers, one of whom is the first award recipient from outside North America, at the opening of the TMA Annual Convention.

Bijal Damani teaches business and commerce to high school students at the S.N. Kansagara School, part of The Galaxy Education System, in Rajkot, Gujarat, India. Silvestre Arcos teaches middle school math and established a dual language program at M.S. 223, The Laboratory School of Finance and Technology, in New York.

Read about Silvestre Arcos.

Read about Bijal Damani.

Established in 2004 with a grant from the John Wm. Butler Foundation Inc., the Butler-Cooley Excellence in Teaching Awards Program honors K-12 teachers who have demonstrated their capacity to change the outcome of students’ lives and the communities where they teach. The program is named in honor of relatives of a past TMA chairman who collectively have spent more than 50 years as teachers, and recognizes the central role that teaching has in the life of the association.

TMA administers the program and provides partial funding through the TMA Cornerstone Board-designated Endowment, which supports research and education in the corporate restructuring industry.  Winners receive a $5,000 cash prize, in addition to lodging and partial transportation expenses to the Annual Convention.

Judges for this year’s competition were:  

  • Tom Henderson, Thomas S. Henderson Attorney at Law, TMA Houston Chapter 
  • Carlton E. Helming, CTP, principal, Helming & Company PC, TMA Connecticut Chapter 
  • Abby Myers, retired elementary school principal with Portland Public Schools, as well as as former human resources administrator in Portland, Ore., who began her 35-year career as a special education and K-8 classroom teacher 
  • Pete Lorain, retired human resources director for public schools, Beaverton, Ore.; past president National Middle School Association; middle school principal; and director at district level
  • Jim Van Develde, communications director, Lakeland Central School District, Shrub Oak, New York; past North East Region vice president of the National School Public Relations Association; past two-term president of the New York School Public Relations Association

The Chicago-based Turnaround Management Association (, has more than 9,000 members in 48 regional chapters worldwide who comprise a professional community of turnaround practitioners, attorneys, accountants, investors, lenders, venture capitalists, appraisers, liquidators, executive recruiters and consultants.  

For more information, contact:

Michele Drayton
TMA Communications Manager

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