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Region IV includes school divisions in Arlington, Clarke, Culpeper, Fairfax, Fauquier, Frederick, Loudoun, Madison, Orange, Page, Prince William, Rappahannock, Shenandoah, and Warren counties, and the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Manassas, Manassas Park and Winchester.

Selection for the award, given by the Virginia Association of School Superintendents, is based upon the candidate's administrative experience, professional growth and evidence of leadership. Honorees from the eight regions in the state will be recognized at a banquet during the association's annual conference on May 3 in Roanoke.


"I am very pleased that the outstanding work Rob has been doing for us in Arlington is being recognized by his colleagues," School Board Chair Libby Garvey said in a press release. "Rob's work over the past eight years has resulted in many valuable improvements for our school system. With the board's support, encouragement and establishment of clear goals, he has implemented a much higher level of standards and accountability for administrators and staff and has made important changes in how we evaluate our educational programs.

"Using solid research, he has introduced many initiatives that have resulted in tremendous improvements in student learning. Finally, Rob views all teachers, administrators and staff as professionals. As a result, he has greatly enhanced the level of professional development and collaborative work for all of our staff."

Before coming to Arlington, Smith spent 16 years as the head of curriculum and instruction for the Spring Independent School District in Houston. He also spent 15 years in the Frederick County (Md.) Public Schools.

Arts Center Celebrates Opening

The Arlington Arts Center will celebrate the opening of its renovated building this weekend.

The center is hosting a complimentary "Evening of Celebration" from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday, to show the public the renovated and expanded facility at 3550 Wilson Blvd. The event is free and features live music, refreshments and the current exhibit: "Art With Accent: Latin Americans in the Mid-Atlantic States."

"This celebration is not a fundraising event, but simply a way of saying 'thank you' to the many people who remained committed to the Arlington Arts Center throughout its extensive renovation," AAC President Diane Smith said. "We will be welcoming many newcomers to the Arts Center who are interested in discovering its many facets and valuable contribution to the arts community."

A new wing behind the original center houses additional studio space for artists. The new Tiffany stained glass windows visible from the front door, in the "Tiffany Gallery" at the opposite end of the foyer, are another highlight. The windows were salvaged from the old Abbey Mausoleum by Arlington County's Historic Preservation Program and the Cultural Affairs Division.

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