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Educators and Other Supporters Honored at Gala

May 6, 2004
Outstanding educators, staff members, schools, businesses, and volunteers were honored at the May 5 Champions for Children Awards Gala.

Among those honored were the Montgomery County Teacher of the Year, Eleanor Goodwin from Churchill High School (See separate news announcement.), and three other finalists, the Supporting Services Employee of the Year, and the winner of the new Dr. Edward Shirley Award for Excellence in Educational Administration and Supervision.

The gala was sponsored by the Montgomery County Business Roundtable for Education, Montgomery County Board of Education, and Montgomery County Council of PTAs. Program host was Colbert I. King of the Washington Post.

Phillip Gainous, principal of Montgomery Blair High School for 20 years and an educational administrator for more than 30 years, received the Dr. Edward Shirley Award for Excellence in Educational Administration and Supervision. Blair is the largest and one of the most diverse schools in Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS). Gainous was recognized for his administrative style, which fosters creativity and innovation, focuses on students' ability to succeed, and extends a commitment to the Blair community that goes beyond the walls of the high school, along with his commitment to elementary education and professional involvement.

S. Thomas Lange, media services technician at Quince Orchard High School and an MCPS employee for 26 years, won the SEIU Local 500 MCCSSE Supporting Services Employee of the Year award. He was credited for supporting students, reinforcing the curriculum, and volunteering time to help students with their projects, showing them how to make their vision real and inspiring them to think on a larger scale.

The event was an opportunity to recognize numerous winners of awards, some that had been previously announced. Awardees included:

· State Superintendent of the Year: Jerry D. Weast
· Outstanding Business Partners: Comcast, Food and Drug Administration, Social and Scientific Systems, Inc.
· Community Collaboration: Robert Anastasi, founder and former executive director, Montgomery County Business Roundtable for Education
· Outstanding School Volunteer Program: Rosemont Elementary School, Ridgeview Middle School, Paint Branch High School
· Washington Post Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher: Mary D.P. Wagner, James Hubert Blake High School
· Washington Post Distinguished Education Leadership: Catherine Harvey, principal, Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School
· Marian Greenblatt Excellence in Education: Pam Fountain, Tilden Middle School; Amy Malone, Thomas S. Wootton High School; Shelly Nicoll, Forest Oak Middle School; Nicholas Chupka, Takoma Park Middle School (first year award).

A complete list of awards is listed in the Gala program and is available by calling the Montgomery County Business Roundtable for Education at 301-279-3100.

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