Reston, Va., May 15, 2013—The National
Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) recently named James M. Rubillo as a
recipient of the Mathematics Education Trust (MET) Lifetime Achievement Award
for Distinguished Service to Mathematics Education. This award honors those who
over a career have contributed significantly to mathematics education through
their leadership, teaching, and service at the national level. Since the
award’s inception in 1994, MET has honored 45 individuals. The list reads like
a “Who’s Who” in mathematics education.
Jim Rubillo has been an inspirational leader, communicator, and advocate for
mathematics education for more than 45 years. He has made numerous
contributions to the mathematics education community, with a special emphasis
on technology and teaching mathematics at the community college and high school
levels. He is a frequent speaker at professional meetings and has made
presentations in all 50 states.
The capstone of his service to NCTM was his eight-year tenure as the
Council’s executive director from 2001–2009.
In that role, he realized a vision for improving instruction with
technology to reach more educators through such initiatives as Math in the
Media and Math Matters. In addition, Rubillo connected NCTM with what has now
become its Illuminations initiative—one of the Council’s most valued projects. He
has served on the board of directors NCTM and the National Council of
Supervisors of Mathematics. His service to NCTM includes membership on four
annual meeting and ten regional conference program committees.
As NCTM executive director, Rubillo also oversaw the development and
publication of NCTM’s Curriculum Focal Points for Prekindergarten through
Grade 8: A Quest for Coherence. Always a leading force in increasing the
Council’s presence and influence as an advocacy organization for mathematics
teaching and learning, Rubillo framed high-level policy discussions about the
need for greater coherence in mathematics curriculum.
A leader in the revolutionary “problem solving as a basic skill” movement,
Rubillo participated in developing NCTM’s An Agenda for Action,
released in 1980. This seminal publication, the first to focus on problem
solving as a basic skill, changed the direction of mathematics education in the
Rubillo had a rich career in math education before leading NCTM as executive
director. He began his career as a mathematics teacher and department chair at
Cheltenham Township Senior High School in Wyncote, Pennsylvania. For 30 years,
he served Bucks County Community College in Newtown, Pennsylvania. Rubillo is
currently professor emeritus at the college.
The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics is the public voice of
mathematics education, providing vision, leadership, and professional
development to support teachers in ensuring mathematics learning of the highest
quality for all students. With 80,000 members and more than 200 Affiliates,
NCTM is the world’s largest organization dedicated to improving mathematics
education in prekindergarten through grade 12. The Council’s Principles and
Standards for School Mathematics includes guidelines for
excellence in mathematics education. Its Curriculum
Focal Points for Prekindergarten through Grade 8 Mathematics: A Quest for
Coherence, released in 2006, identifies the most important mathematical
topics for each grade level. Focus
in High School Mathematics: Reasoning and Sense Making advocates
practical changes to the high school mathematics curriculum to refocus learning
on reasoning and sense making. NCTM is dedicated to ongoing dialogue and
constructive discussion with all stakeholders about what is best for our
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