A photo of Martin Palermo

William Floyd High School chemistry teacher Martin Palermo has been selected as a member of Stony Brook University’s third annual class of “40 Under Forty” honorees for demonstrating achievements in education as well as “exemplifying the spirit of Stony Brook,” which includes “commitment, passion, leadership and the pursuit of excellence.” He is the only honoree in this year’s class in the category of Education.

“I am truly honored and humbled by this recognition but as Albert Einstein said, ‘I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.’” said Mr. Palermo, who has earned two degrees from Stony Brook, a Bachelor of Science in Biology (2004), and a Master of Arts in Teaching (Biology, 2006). He is currently pursuing a PhD in chemical education at Stony Brook.

Mr. Palermo, a teacher in his 11th year at William Floyd, has been recognized by Governor Andrew Cuomo as a New York State Master Teacher (one of only 70 in the Long Island region), a designation given to New York’s most outstanding science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) teachers for providing the most innovative STEM education to their students, their commitment to professional growth and enthusiasm for sharing successful practices with their colleagues.

Additional past awards Mr. Palermo has received include the Suffolk ASSET (Association of Suffolk Supervisors for Educational Technologies) “Bright Light Award” for technology integration in the classroom and a Stony Brook University “Campus Life Award” for his commitment to promoting student success through teaching at Stony Brook, where he has previously served as an adjunct professor in undergraduate biology (anatomy and physiology).

Mr. Palermo also serves in a leadership position for the Long Island Association for Chemistry Teacher Support (LIACTS) at Stony Brook, in which eight NYS Master Teachers share best practices, pedagogical techniques and current chemistry topics while working to facilitate collaboration of chemistry teachers across Long Island. Fellow William Floyd High School chemistry teacher and NYS Master Teacher Kristen Drury co-founded the organization in 2014. In his spare time, he serves as a firefighter/rescue diver for the Hagerman Fire Department in East Patchogue.

This year’s awards also have an additional William Floyd connection through Dan McCloskey, PhD, a 1993 William Floyd High School graduate and winner of the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers, who currently serves as an associate professor of psychology at the College of Staten Island.