ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Over 2,000 people will gather to support education this weekend at America’s Center.

The St. Louis American Foundation will honor a dozen people including eight teachers at urban schools or minority educators at their 29th annual Salute to Excellence in Education Scholarship and Awards Dinner. The evening includes awarding of $840,000 in student scholarships and financial support for teachers.

Deborah Patterson, the recently retired president of the Monsanto Fund, will be recognized as the education advocate of the year. She says you can’t work in economic development and not be an advocate for education.

“Economic development for our community and access to a great education is intertwined,” Patterson says.

Patterson adds Monsanto has supported STEM educational initiatives not only here in St. Louis, but also around the world including literacy efforts in Brazil, South Africa, India, Mexico, Argentina and Vietnam.

“It’s beyond the school board, it’s beyond parents, it’s beyond the teacher,” Patterson says. “I think it’s our collective responsibility as a community.”

(TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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