The Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence, which recognizes
outstanding instruction in the skilled trades in U.S. public high schools, awarded $510,000 to
the three first‐place winners and seven second‐place winners. Harbor Freight Tools made
additional donations totaling $44,000 to 44 semi‐finalists.
The first‐place winners are Bob Kilmer, who teaches woodworking, computer‐aided design and
architecture and construction from Enumclaw High School in King County, Washington,
Brendan Malone, who teaches marine systems technology at Urban Assembly New York Harbor
School in Brooklyn, and Jonathan Schwartz, who teaches advanced manufacturing at Colfax
High School in Placer County, California.
“We’re thrilled to celebrate these remarkable teachers for inspiring their students to stay in
school and develop skills that can lead to great paying jobs that are so important to our
economy,” said Eric Smidt, CEO and owner of national tool retailer Harbor Freight Tools and
founder of The Smidt Foundation, which established and operates Harbor Freight Tools for
Schools. “We created this prize to shine a spotlight on excellent skilled trades teaching and to
attract investment in these classes so a strong skilled trades education can once again be
available to public high school students across America.”
Drawn from a field of nearly 700 applicants from across the country, the three first‐place
winners will each receive $30,000, and their schools will each receive $70,000 to support their
skilled trades programs.