There were two things that really surprised me when I first started my job as Superintendent of FCPS—how many things required my signature and how often I had my picture taken. One of the most pleasant surprises for me was how often I was asked to participate in a special event or opportunity.
I had been on the job for less than a month when Board President Young asked me if I liked to dance. My reply was, “Yes. I love to dance.” He then told the woman next to him that she should have me represent FCPS instead of him. And so I was signed up to participate in the Alzheimer’s Association’s “Dancing Stars of Frederick!” That was the first of a long list of wonderful opportunities that I have experienced as the Superintendent of FCPS:
- Modeling a beautiful wedding gown in Goodwill’s Second Runway fashion show
- Throwing out the first pitch at a Frederick Keys game
- Winning the Celebrity Harness Race at the Great Frederick Fair
- Judging baked goods at the Walkersville Community Show
- Getting doused with freezing water by HS students as part of the Ice Bucket Challenge
- Performing a “Typewriter” solo with the Maryland Band Directors Band
- Hitting the inaugural tee shot for the CMC Golf Tournament
- Doing a cameo appearance in Cinderella at Oakdale HS
- Opening a beehive at CTC
- Winning the Pro-Am Golf Tournament with Board President Young and our team at the Neediest Kids event
- Receiving a leadership award from the Neediest Kids at the French Embassy in Washington D.C.
I greatly value the speaking opportunities I am given as Superintendent. Quoting students in my graduation speeches always brings me pride and joy! Sharing inspirational messages during Fired Up Friday at Catoctin HS is very special to me. Another highlight is identifying wonderful things about public education and advocating for positive change as part of Leadership Frederick County’s Education Day. I have spoken to Lions clubs, Rotary clubs, and am proud to offer welcoming remarks at the Emmitsburg/Thurmont Community Show. I have been interviewed on WFMD, WDVM, and Channel 8, but my favorite interviews are when students at CTC have me as a guest on CMC Spotlight.
And, of course, the opportunity to interact with our students is always my favorite. Whether surprising them with a Tweet as they head off to their prom or tweeting about the amazing things I see in our classrooms, the energy I get from engaging with our students is the best! They have watched me do sit-ups, invited me on field trips, tagged me in Field Day games, danced the Electric Slide with me, and been my guests on “Tweet of the Week.”
I can’t wait to see what opportunities are presented to me in the next four years.