UMSL alumnus Robert Good received the 2012 Tachau Teacher of the Year Award from the Organization of American Historians. (Photo by Ladue School District)

Teaching and inspiring the minds of young people isn’t an easy job. Some teachers have it. Some don’t. And for one University of Missouri–St. Louis alumnus, his name says it all.

“Mr. Good is, well good. Good at teaching and good at listening,” said one of his former students.

Robert Good, who earned a doctoral degree in education in 2010 from UMSL, received the 2012 Tachau Teacher of the Year Award from the Organization of American Historians. The award was presented last month during the 105th annual meeting of the organization in Milwaukee.

“I am deeply honored and humbled,” he said about receiving the award.

Good has been a history teacher at Ladue Horton Watkins High School in the Ladue (Mo.) School District for the past 21 years.

He said he became a teacher for three basic reasons, and still enjoys every minute of it.

“First, I love history and I believe that the stories we learn about the past help shape our actions in the present,” Good said. “The second reason is linked to the first. Public schools are at the center of our democracy. They are the only place in America where people from diverse backgrounds regularly come together and work to form community. As such, they are crucial for nurturing citizens who can engage with each other to address challenges our nation faces. History helps them think about their shared past as they contemplate the future. Finally, young people are amazing. Every day I get to share a classroom with creative, energetic and brilliant people.”

The Tachau Teacher of the Year Award, named after Mary K. Bonsteel Tachau, former history professor and department chair at the University of Louisville (Ky.), is given annually for contributions made by pre-collegiate teachers to improve history education within the field of American history.

The Organization of American Historians was founded in 1907 and is the largest learned society and professional organization dedicated to the teaching and study of the American past.

Jen Hatton

Jen Hatton