OgnibeneRichard T. Ognibene

10-12th grade Regents Chemistry and Physics

Fairport High School

Fairport, New York


Total years as a classroom teacher: 28






M.S. in Inorganic Chemistry           University of Rochester           1987
B.S. in Science                                    Siena College                             1985



1992 – present     Fairport High School                              10th-12th grade Chemistry/ Physics
1990-2000          Monroe County Community College   Chemistry
1990-1992           Caledonia-Mumford High School        10th-12th grade Chemistry/Physics
1986-1990           Perry High School                                   7th-8th grade Life Science/ Physical Science


2011                Empire State Pride Agenda Community Service Award
2009                Horace Mann Award for Teaching Excellence (National Education Association)
2008                New York State Teacher of the Year
2008                Betsey Exner Leadership Award (Fairport Educators’ Association)
2007                Key to the City of Rochester
2006                Crystal Apple Award
2005                One Teacher in Ten Award


  • Ognibene says that a great teacher spells his name in fire on the blackboard or submerges himself in a barrel of water because he knows that exciting lessons inspire kids to learn the scientific principles at hand.


  • Ognibene believes that teaching is the noblest job in the world because “we bring hope for the future. That is why I was drawn to teaching, and that is why I stay.”



Rich has been the glue of Fairport High School’s soul.  He has a deep understanding that building positive relationships between students and teacher, teachers and administrators, teachers and community is essential if we expect to achieve respectable academic outcomes.”

— Dr. William Cala, Superintendent



“Richard Ognibene is the teacher every teacher aspires to be.  Rich is an expert in his subject, making science come alive.  Rich is an expert in pedagogy, applying research on best practices.  Rich loves his students, participating in their extracurricular activities and their homes.  He is the best of the best!”                                                                                                — Marguerite Izzo, NTHF inductee/nominator


“Rich Ognibene lives to reach his students and share his enthusiasm for science, learning, and most unusually, he teaches to model how to live and love, individually and communally.  Teaching is not a profession for Rich.  It’s who he is.”

— Bill Tiberio, teaching colleague