Voya Financial Congratulates 2017 National Teacher of the Year Sydney Chaffee

NEW YORK, April 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), proudly honors Sydney Chaffee, a ninth-grade humanities teacher at Codman Academy Charter Public School in Boston, MA, who today was named the 2017 National Teacher of the Year. Next week, Chaffee will be honored, along with the other 2017 State Teachers of the Year, at a White House Ceremony. 

Voya is the presenting sponsor of the prestigious National Teacher of the Year program, which helps recognize excellence in the classroom, highlights the important, positive impact that skilled teachers can have on the lives of their students, and amplifies and empowers teachers' voices. This year marks Voya's 13th year supporting the National Teacher of the Year program, run by the Council of Chief State School Officers.

"We are proud to celebrate teachers like Sydney and all of the 2017 State Teachers of the Year who help children learn the skills that will help them achieve better and financially-secure futures," said Heather Lavallee, president of Tax-Exempt Markets, Voya Financial. "Voya is committed to helping children become financially resilient, equipping them with the educational foundation and life skills needed to make sound financial decisions throughout their lives. That is why we are pleased to support the National Teacher of the Year program, which honors teachers who are empowering children to succeed. Congratulations to Sydney and all of the 2017 State Teachers of the Year."

Chaffee is known for creating authentic learning experiences that encourage her students to see themselves as having the power to make change in the world based on lessons from the past. She accomplishes this through a unique curriculum that focuses on social justice and brings students together from across their school and community. This includes the school's "Community Circle," which brings together the entire school community once a week, and initiatives with community partners including Boston's Huntington Theatre Company and Codman Square Health Center. As the 2017 National Teacher of the Year, Chaffee will spend the next year traveling the nation to represent educators and advocate on behalf of teachers and students.

Supporting programs like National Teacher of the Year furthers Voya's mission and vision, which is to help all Americans — including teachers — become financially and emotionally ready for their retirement. Through its charitable giving arm, Voya Foundation, the company is committed to programs that help young people become financially resilient. At the core of Voya Foundation is the belief that education is the key to healthy communities, which in turn fosters the sustainability and growth of the economy. Voya's support for teachers, children and education extends beyond the National Teacher of the Year to other signature programs — such as Unsung Heroes® and Junior Achievement.

In addition to Chaffee, the finalists for the 2017 National Teacher of the Year are Chris Gleason (instrumental music teacher and band director at Patrick Marsh Middle School in Sun Prairie, WI), Megan Gross (special education teacher at Del Norte High School in San Diego, CA) and Athanasia Kyriakakos (art education teacher at Mergenthaler Vocational Technical High School in Baltimore, MD). Learn more about Voya's support of the National Teacher of the Year program.

Media Contact: 
Tiffany Hawks                                                    
Voya Financial                                                   
Office: (212) 309-8915                                       
Cell: (321) 684-1168                                           
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About Voya Financial®

Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), helps Americans plan, invest and protect their savings — to get ready to retire better. Serving the financial needs of approximately 13.6 million individual and institutional customers in the United States, Voya is a Fortune 500 company that had $11 billion in revenue in 2016. The company had $484 billion in total assets under management and administration as of Dec. 31, 2016. With a clear mission to make a secure financial future possible — one person, one family, one institution at a time — Voya's vision is to be America's Retirement Company®. Certified as a "Great Place to Work" by the Great Place to Work® Institute, Voya is equally committed to conducting business in a way that is socially, environmentally, economically and ethically responsible and has been recognized as one of the 2017 World's Most Ethical Companies® by the Ethisphere Institute, as well as one of the Top Green Companies in the U.S., by Newsweek magazine. For more information, visit voya.com. Follow Voya Financial on Facebook and Twitter @Voya.

About Voya Foundation

Voya Foundation's mission is to improve the quality of life in communities where Voya Financial operates and its employees and customers live. Voya Foundation provides grants and establishes signature partnerships in the areas of financial literacy and children's education and fosters employee engagement to deepen our positive impact on the community. For more information, visit www.voyafoundation.com.

SOURCE Voya Financial, Inc.