Sarasota Charter School Teacher Receives Congressional Award

Marissa Dobbert, a seventh grade math teacher at Sarasota Military Academy Prep middle school, was recently recognized with a Congressional Teacher Award. The award was established by Congressman Vern Buchanan to recognize outstanding teachers in the 16th Congressional District.

Nine teachers throughout the Suncoast region were awarded this distinction; SMA-MAJ Dobbert is one of two winners from Sarasota County and the only teacher from a local charter school. This is the fourth consecutive year a teacher from the SMA Prep middle school has received this honor.

“I am incredibly excited to receive this award and earn recognition with such amazing teachers throughout our district,” said SMA-MAJ Marissa Dobbert, Sarasota Military Academy Prep Math Instructor and 2019 Congressional Teaching Award Winner. “It is an honor to be nominated for this award when I am simply doing what I love to do every day; teaching talented cadets at Sarasota Military Academy.”

This year, 34 teachers were nominated, and winners were selected by a panel of judges from Sarasota, Manatee and Hillsborough counties. Schools are asked to submit nominations and teachers receive a certificate and additional recognition including having the United States Flag flown over the United States Capitol in their honor.

“We have an incredible team of teachers at both the Sarasota Military Academy high school and Prep middle school campuses, and it is always rewarding to see our outstanding staff recognized,” said SMA-LTC Thomas Vara, Sarasota Military Academy Prep Head of School. “SMA-MAJ Dobbert continues to show her dedication to our cadets and our mission while rising above challenges and consistently going above and beyond. We are fortunate to add her to our list of Congressional Teaching Award winners.”

Previous winners from SMA include SMA-MAJ Todd Brown, SMA-MAJ Carol Pelletier and SMA-MAJ Deb Walker. To view the list of district winners for 2019, visit

About Sarasota Military Academy
Founded in 2002, Sarasota Military Academy (SMA) is a public charter school, college preparatory academy and an accredited IB Diploma and Middle Years Programme (MYP) School with two campuses located in Sarasota, Florida. Combining extraordinary academics with the highest military principles of camaraderie, focus, leadership, integrity, compassion, poise, honor and respect, SMA’s mission is to graduate young men and women who will confidently define their personal and unique goals for success in a multi-cultural and globalized world. Sarasota Military Academy High School is located at 801 N. Orange Avenue and Sarasota Military Academy Prep Middle School, is located at 3101 Bethel Lane. To learn more about SMA, visit

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