SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — The principal of Ridgely Elementary School Ken Gilmore has been named the Horace Mann Administrator of the Year.

According to officials, Gilmore retires this year after 35 years as an educator. He will receive $500 and a crystal award.

Gilmore was made aware of the news at Ridgely on Friday, followed by a schoolwide celebration including staff and students.

Administrator the Year finalists were Karon Durrett and Cody Trigg. Each will receive $250.

Horace Mann has sponsored the Educator of the Year program since its inception in 1988. Horace Mann is the largest national multiline insurance company focusing on educators’ financial needs. It provides auto and homeowners insurance, retirement annuities, life insurance and other financial solutions. Founded by educators for educators® in 1945, the company is headquartered in Springfield.