2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader, Finalists, and School Recipients

The Outstanding School-Based Leaders Recognized at FCPS Honors

The Outstanding School-Based Leader Award recognizes school-based leaders who demonstrate outstanding leadership and strengthen and improve the learning environment through their work. Any FCPS employee or community member may nominate a Schedule C employee who has held the position for at least one full year for this award.

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader 

Danielle HornbeckeDanielle Hornbecker

Director of Student Services
Frost Middle School, Region 5

Danielle exemplifies the belief that if it benefits students, she will find a way to make it happen. She empowers educators to seek solutions and remove barriers for the benefit of the students. She proactively creates structures and supports that provide access and opportunity for all students resulting in an increase in enrollment in advanced coursework. Her commitment to involving stakeholders, analyzing data, and providing professional development builds collective efficacy among all staff members. By creating meaningful relationships, she ensures her teams value diverse perspectives and create safe spaces for meaningful dialogue and collaboration. Danielle is an instructional leader who consistently demonstrates integrity, professionalism, and collaboration in her work with students, staff, and the greater school community to champion student success. 

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader Finalist

Rachel ForteRachel Forte

Assistant Principal
Centreville Elementary School, Region 4

Rachel believes when empowerment, collective efficacy, belonging, and joy coalesce, all students thrive. Rachel’s passion for instruction, equity, and a positive school climate are prominently evident. She led the implementation of a robust Multi-tiered System of Support program, established mindfulness labs, and maintained an unyielding partnership with George Mason University to empower future educators. Moreover, Rachel believes leadership is about consistency. It is not about one initiative or event – it is about showing up each day for every stakeholder and committing to capitalizing on every interaction. This belief system is exemplified through the words of a colleague: “Even on the hard days, I know I'll laugh, work hard, and strive to do better. It's inevitable with Rachel by your side.” 

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader Finalist

Christy HanlonChristy Hanlon

Director of Student Services
Justice High School, Region 2

"True leadership isn't about dictating a path; it's about empowering and supporting others to find their own way." Christy isn't one to settle for the status quo. Student advocacy isn't just a part of her job description; it’s the fuel that ignites her passion and determination. An out-of-the-box thinker, Christy isn't afraid to challenge conventional methods and develop innovative solutions to ensure every student has the resources they need to thrive. Christy recognizes the importance of fostering connections. She intentionally builds rapport with staff, students, and families, creating a strong foundation for a positive school environment. One Justice student stated, “Ms. Hanlon spares no effort in providing valuable support, offering guidance, and endless encouragement so that students achieve success.” 

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader Finalist

Andrew OrensteinAndrew Orenstein

Assistant Principal, Special Education
Twain Middle School, Region 3

What makes Andrew’s leadership style so unique is that he is truly a collaborative partner with the staff and students in his school. From implementing new math programs to attending field trips, the staff, students, and families trust Andrew and share their struggles and successes with him. He is an advocate for every student who steps through the door and has an incredible passion for school culture and community. His booming voice, approachable demeanor, visibility, and growth mindset encourage his Twain Middle School community to feel included and heard. His students seek his guidance, support, humor, and more importantly their time with him in the cafeteria during his lunch duties. 

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader Finalist

Chris PowellChris Powell

Assistant Principal
Carson Middle School, Region 1

Chris believes that every student can achieve academic and personal success. His core beliefs define his leadership philosophy rooted in care for one another, providing students relevant learning opportunities, and having an unwavering commitment to teamwork and excellence. Under Chris’ guidance at Carson, he aligned the grading and reporting policy with equity-centered practices, introduced staff recognition programs that cultivated a community of acknowledgment, and designed school-wide Multi-tiered Systems of Support structures that focus on student interventions and success. Chris leads by example and is passionate about continuous improvement for the benefit of students, staff, and the greater school community. Above all, he works tirelessly to forge positive relationships to create a welcoming climate at Carson. 

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader Finalist

LaDonna TateLaDonna Tate

Assistant Principal
Forestdale Elementary School, Region 6

LaDonna is an empathetic and devoted educational leader dedicated to student achievement and social-emotional well-being. She believes that students are at the center of all educational efforts, creating a nurturing and inclusive environment where every student can thrive and reach their full potential. LaDonna's leadership style is based on trust, collaboration, and accountability. She prioritizes the professional growth of all staff and works to create a safe space to build their efficacy. She approaches every situation with humility and a willingness to learn from others, working to maintain positive relationships with staff, students, and families. LaDonna's unwavering commitment to those she serves makes her an exceptional leader and an inspiration to others.

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader Finalist

Greg ThomasGreg Thomas

Assistant Administrator
Fairfax County Adult High School, Non-Region

Greg believes that collaboration is a leader’s superpower. As an assistant administrator at Fairfax County Adult High School, Greg faced low graduation rates, complex class schedules, and a student body with over 85% multilingual learners. The main obstacles to student success were the Virginia Department of Education end-of-course tests; failing them prevented students from earning necessary credits. Greg collaborated with the instructional team, implementing support structures for test preparation and garnering stakeholder support. As a result, student pass rates soared to record highs in every subject area. Greg champions teamwork, believing that collective success breeds repeat achievements. Collaboration is key, and Greg’s leadership exemplifies its transformative power.

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader Finalists

2024 Outstanding School-Based Leader School Recipients

  • Annandale High School
    • Erik Healey - Director of Student Services*
  • Armstrong Elementary School
    • Andrea Depiro - Assistant Principal
  • Beech Tree Elementary School
    • Bridget Louder - Assistant Principal
  • Bryant High School
    • Ramon Lee - Assistant Principal*
  • Cameron Elementary School
    • Amanda Snyder - Assistant Principal
  • Cardinal Forest Elementary School
    • Ashleigh Long - Assistant Principal
  • Carl Sandburg Middle School
    • Katie Pluntke - Assistant Principal
  • Centreville Elementary School
    • Rachel Forte - Assistant Principal*
  • Centreville High School
    • Alexis Wenzel - Assistant Principal
  • Chantilly High School
    • Jihoon Shin - Assistant Principal
  • Clearview Elementary School
    • Joshua Redford - Assistant Principal
  • Clermont Elementary School
    • Trevia Younger - Assistant Principal
  • Colin Powell Elementary School
    • Hope Song - Assistant Principal
  • Columbia Elementary School
    • Sarah Boudart - Assistant Principal
  • Cub Run Elementary School
    • Nausheen Haider - Assistant Principal
  • Eagle View Elementary School
    • Kaitlin Wilson-Vogel - Assistant Principal
  • Fairfax County Adult High School
    • Gregory Thomas - Assistant Administrator*
  • Fairfax High School
    • Brian Plancich - Assistant Principal*
  • Falls Church High School
    • Sean Rolon - Assistant Principal*
  • Forest Edge Elementary School
    • Ashley Fisher - Assistant Principal
  • Forestdale Elementary School
    • LaDonna Tate - Assistant Principal*
  • Forestville Elementary School
    • Afton Carlson - Assistant Principal
  • Fort Belvoir Primary School
    • Norma Gordon - Assistant Principal
  • Franklin Middle School
    • Michelle Case - Director of Student Services
  • Frost Middle School
    • Danielle Hornbecker - Director of Student Services*
  • Glasgow Middle School
    • Jennifer Pallotto - Director of Student Services
  • Greenbriar East Elementary School
    • Charita Eley - Assistant Principal
  • Greenbriar West Elementary School
    • Jordan Cook - Assistant Principal
  • Gunston Elementary School
    • Ebony Opie - Assistant Principal*
  • Halley Elementary School
    • Paula Johnson-Tyler - Assistant Principal*
  • Haycock Elementary School
    • Jody Delaney - Assistant Principal
  • Hayfield Secondary School
    • Carmen Lofton Johnson - Assistant Principal
  • Herndon Elementary School
    • Elizabeth Baxter - Assistant Principal*
  • Herndon Middle School
    • John Bordenkecher - Assistant Principal
  • Holmes Middle School
    • Nicholas Hartman - Assistant Principal
  • Hunt Valley Elementary School
    • Chrissy Gibbs - Assistant Principal*
  • Hunters Woods Elementary School for the Arts & Sciences 
    • Charles "Buck" Condill - Assistant Principal*
  • Justice High School
    • Christy Hanlon - Director of Student Services*
  • Kilmer Middle School
    • Debra David - Assistant Principal
  • Lake Anne Elementary School
    • Brittany Rogers - Assistant Principal
  • Lake Braddock Secondary School
    • Scott Darwin - Assistant Principal, HS
  • Langley High School
    • Geoff Noto - Director of Student Activities
  • Langston Hughes Middle School
    • Sharon Duncan-Hudspeth - Assistant Principal
  • Laurel Hill Elementary School
    • Thmeaka Traylor - Assistant Principal
  • Lewis High School
    • Kimberly Harrison - Director of Student Services
  • Liberty Middle School
    • Renee Pete - Director of Student Services
  • Little Run Elementary School
    • Lesley Hassen - Assistant Principal
  • Louise Archer Elementary School
    • Jennifer Condra - Assistant Principal*
  • Luther Jackson Middle School
    • Kelsey Toure - Assistant Principal
  • Madison High School
    • Timothy Buckley - Director of Student Services
  • Mantua Elementary School
    • Richard Deixler - Assistant Principal
  • Marshall High School
    • Danielle Schoolcraft - Assistant Principal
  • McLean High School
    • Jeffrey Barham - Assistant Principal
  • McNair Elementary School
    • Brandy O'Bryant - Assistant Principal*
  • Mosaic Elementary School
    • Brooke Brylawski - Assistant Principal
  • Oakton High School
    • Lawrence Stroud - Assistant Principal
  • Orange Hunt Elementary School
    • Heather Mathews - Assistant Principal
  • Poe Middle School
    • Leslie Rozzoni - Assistant Principal
  • Rachel Carson Middle School
    • Chris Powell - Assistant Principal*
  • Riverside Elementary School
    • Kaila Wise - Assistant Principal
  • Robinson Secondary School
    • Jason Kagarise - Assistant Principal*
  • Rocky Run Middle School
    • Young Hong - Director of Student Services*
  • Sangster Elementary School
    • Jennifer Redford - Assistant Principal
  • Saratoga Elementary School
    • Abigail Lower - Assistant Principal
  • Shrevewood Elementary School
    • Katie Vandawalker - Assistant Principal
  • Silverbrook Elementary School
    • Shannon Mueck - Assistant Principal
  • South County High School
    • Claudia Pirouzan-Jones - Assistant Principal
  • South County Middle School
    • Jonathan Mitchell - Assistant Principal
  • South Lakes High School
    • Valerie Winter - Assistant Principal
  • Stone Middle School
    • Eva-Beth Levy - Assistant Principal
  • Sunrise Valley Elementary School
    • Ashley Younger - Assistant Principal
  • Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technology
    • Dylan Forshay - Director of Student Activities
  • Timber Lane Elementary School
    • Shele Banford - Assistant Principal *
  • Twain Middle School
    • Andrew Orenstein - Assistant Principal, Special Education*
  • Wakefield Forest Elementary School
    • Amy Williams - Assistant Principal
  • Walt Whitman Middle School
    • Cameron Mathison - Assistant Principal*
  • Washington Irving Middle School
    • Meg Gollinger - Director of Student Services
  • West Potomac High School
    • Kevin McMahon - Director of Student Services
  • West Springfield High School
    • Shannon M Matheny - Assistant Principal
  • Westfield High School
    • Amanda Dorr - Assistant Principal
  • Westgate Elementary School
    • Summer Manos - Assistant Principal*
  • Weyanoke Elementary School
    • Michelle Doyle - Assistant Principal
  • White Oaks Elementary School
    • Dana Chen - Assistant Principal*
  • Woodley Hills Elementary School
    • Brandon Davis - Assistant Principal
  • Woodson High School
    • Kathy Martin - Assistant Principal

*Denotes pyramid winner

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