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Julio Dejo, after-school program specialist at Lanier Middle School has been named Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) 2013 Support Employee of the Year. The announcement was made at FCPS Honors, a ceremony established to recognize the winners of FCPS employee awards.

Dejo has served as the after-school specialist since 2007 and runs a comprehensive after-school program that is attended by 90 percent of the students. He is known for his interpersonal skills, developing relationships with the students, and learning their names, interests, skills and strengths. His lunchtime conversations with students often result in the development of a new after-school program, as he constantly works toward the goal of finding events and clubs to reach all students.

“When Mr. Dejo was hired as Lanier’s After-School Specialist, he inherited a program that was small, disjointed, and largely ineffectual,” said Dr. Scott Poole, principal of LMS. “Under Mr. Dejo’s leadership, it has grown into one of the largest and most respected After-School programs in FCPS. Whether the program is intramural basketball, Model United Nations, TSA/Lego Robotics or babysitting, Mr. Dejo has created a cycle of programmatic improvement that meets the needs of Lanier’s extremely diverse student body.”


On the eve of the Tony Awards, Fairfax High School cast members of Hello Dolly! attended the National Capital Area Cappies Awards last night at the Kennedy Center. Members from the Fairfax High School Orchestra won Best Orchestra for a Musical for their performance in Hello Dolly! and Alexandra Nicopoulos won the best female vocalist, also for Hello Dolly!

The Cappies, “Critics and Awards Program” is designed to encourage both high school theatre programs and high school journalism. Journalism students from around the area attend shows at other schools, write reviews and publish in local papers such as the Washington Post. At the end of the year, the student critics vote for awards in a variety of categories including best performance, choreography, set design and costumes. The awards are presented at the Kennedy Center to a sold out audience.

“It was a great night for and the arts in the City of Fairfax Schools were once again on display,” said Dr. Peter Noonan, Superintendent of the City of Fairfax Schools and Cappie presenter. “On behalf of the City of Fairfax School Board and the City Schools staff, I congratulate everyone at Fairfax High School involved in the production of Hello Dolly!”


Robert C. Russell, former superintendent of the City of Fairfax Schools from 1984-1995, died Sunday, June 2nd in Elkins, West Virginia. Mr. Russell was 83.

Bob Russell began his career as a music teacher in Fairfax County Public Schools following four years of military service with the United States Air Force Band. In 1960, Mr. Russell began his twelve year administrative career as assistant principal and principal of the new Lanier Intermediate School (now Lanier Middle School). Following his principalship and retirement in 1984 from Robinson High School, Mr. Russell was appointed Superintendent of the City of Fairfax Schools where he remained until 1995.

“Bob’s passing is a great loss for the Fairfax City community,” said Dr. Peter Noonan, Superintendent of the City of Fairfax Schools. “Bob was a dedicated servant to the Fairfax City students and he will be missed.”

During his tenure as superintendent Mr. Russell oversaw the design and construction of the theatre at LMS to be used by students and the community for artistic performances. In 1996, the City of Fairfax School Board unanimously voted to name the theatre the Robert C. Russell Auditorium.

Mr. Russell, a city of Fairfax resident for over 30 years, was also an active member of the Rotary Club of Fairfax, where he was “Rotarian of the Year” in 1993.

“Bob Russell will be remembered for his leadership as a school administrator and city school superintendent,” said Janice Miller, Chairman of the City of Fairfax School Board. “He was a consensus builder with a keen sense of humor and had an uncanny ability to connect with people with his folksy charm. He will be missed.”

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