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August 7, 2013

America’s “First Law Professor” to Address Teacher Conference in Naples

George Wythe, one of America’s founding fathers who is recognized as the country’s first law professor, will be portrayed by interpreter Chris Hull at The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s Teaching America History Conference, taking place Wednesday, Aug. 7 at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Administrative Center in Naples.

Wythe, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, taught and was a mentor to Thomas Jefferson, John Marshall, Henry Clay and other notable American leaders. Hull will portray Wythe in appearance, speech and manner of dress during a presentation to seventh-grade teachers as part of an immersion experience designed to help teachers convey the spirit of the American Revolution to their students.

Naples resident Linda Morton is the primary sponsor of the foundation’s program for 35 teachers, titled “Bringing History to Life in Your Classroom: The American Experiment in Self-Government.” The day long workshop is part of The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s Teacher Development program, which helps teachers meet academic content standards, support interdisciplinary curriculum and learn innovative teaching strategies. Session topics include The Great Debate, The Balance of Powers, Influencing our Government and The Virtual Republic.

“As a former high school educator and coach in the Collier County Public Schools System, I have seen firsthand the difference education can make in the lives of children,” said Morton. “Colonial Williamsburg’s techniques of using first-person role playing and technology are helping teachers make history more interactive and exciting.”

Since 1990, nearly 15,000 teachers from 50 states have attended weeklong, on-site Teacher Institutes, customized on-site workshops, and off-site conferences held in their school districts.

“The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation excels at helping teachers and students understand the significance of our country’s founding fathers and their process for creating our government through a unique approach to teaching history,” said Laird A. Lile, a Naples attorney who supports the foundation and assisted with the teachers’ conference. “These programs truly make a difference in the students’ overall learning experience.”

For more information on the conference, contact Wendy Hodgson at the Collier County School District at 239-377-0097 or

Media Contact:
Barbara Brown