Alesia B. Slocumb-Bradford
Excellence in Teaching Award When Alesia B. Slocumb-Bradford decided to study math and computer science at Daemen College near Buffalo, N.Y., she thought she would go on to a lucrative career in technology. But after she talked with a recruiter for the D.C. public schools at a job fair, she realized she could do more for the community as a teacher.
And Slocumb-Bradford, who teaches math, said she chose to focus on math, computer science, science and engineering because minorities are underrepresented in these fields. "The need to increase students' interest in [these] fields has become paramount as this country takes on the challenge of maintaining its position as a leading nation in our new technological, global society," she said. Slocumb-Bradford has been honored for her teaching at Thomas Jefferson High School. She and two other D.C. teachers recently won President Clinton's Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. The teachers each received $7,500 for professional development and to advance math and science curriculums in their schools and the District.
In addition, the National Council of Negro Women, along with Shell Oil Co., named Slocumb-Bradford the winner last month of the 1999 Mid-Atlantic Excellence in Teaching Award. The award honors the legacy of educator Mary McLeod Bethune. Slocumb-Bradford and teachers from six other regions across the country will each receive $1,200 at a ceremony in September. Slocumb-Bradford, 34, said she will use the money for curriculum materials.
Slocumb-Bradford, of Southeast Washington, describes her teaching as unorthodox, creative and student-centered. She uses questioning techniques to keep her students engaged in learning, and she said that students and their parents notice the students' growth throughout the school year.
"I liked this class because my teacher talked about math in a way that I could understand it," one student said in a written evaluation of Slocumb-Bradford. Several students have written to her after they graduated, thanking her for helping them to understand the subjects that they routinely found difficult.
"Every now and then you go through stages in your career where you feel like you've hit a plateau, but you're looking for and hungering for that first challenge," Slocumb-Bradford said. In teaching, "there's always something to give you that next challenge."
At Jefferson High, she also works with the Stock Market Club, the Robotics Team and the Computer Science Conference club. She is studying to earn her PhD in math education at Morgan State University in Baltimore, and she plans to write a book about educational motivation in students.
Congressional Arts Competition Winner
Daniel Somarriba, a recent graduate of Duke Ellington School of the Arts, has won the D.C. portion of the Congressional Arts Competition. As a result, his artwork will be displayed in the pedestrian tunnel between the Capitol and the Longworth House Office Building. The work, which will be on exhibit for a year, is a linoleum print titled "Duke Ellington: King of Swing."
Somarriba won first prize from among 104 entries from District students for the contest, which was sponsored by Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.). Somarriba's work will be displayed with the work of students from each congressional district in the United States.
Tim Harney, of Edmund Burke School, won second place in the District for his portrait of U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan; and Salvador Arcualo, of Bell Multicultural School, won third place for his work titled "Chiroscuro-Sombros."
William C. Kelly Jr.
Lawyer of the Year
William C. Kelly Jr., of Northwest Washington, has been named the D.C. Bar Association's Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year, in part for his work with a Ward 8 development project in Southeast Washington. Kelly and his law firm, Latham and Watkins, have acted as legal counsel for the East of the River Community Development Corp., which has created plans for the construction of town houses and condominiums, pushed the removal of environmental hazards from old buildings and helped arrange the arrival of a supermarket in the ward. He was honored last month at a dinner.
United Way has honored Stanli Montgomery, who graduated from Benjamin Banneker High School this year, for her dedication to volunteering. Montgomery has spent a year doing office work for the Youth & Health and Safety department of the National Capital Chapter of the American Red Cross. She and more than a dozen other District teens were honored for their scholastic achievement and commitment to helping others and for being positive role models for their peers. Each winner received a jacket and a $50 gift certificate.
Montgomery will enter Georgetown University in the fall, where she will major in political science.
Louis Sterling III
Harry Truman Scholarship
Louis Sterling III, a finance major at Howard University, is among 79 college juniors from across the country who will each receive $30,000 for graduate school. The Harry Truman Scholarship recognizes students who have a 3.9 grade-point average, an exemplary record of community service and outstanding leadership potential. Sterling received the award for his excellent academic record and for his plans to pursue a career in public service.
Hine Junior High Honored
A team of two teachers from Hine Junior High School has been awarded a grant from GTE Corp. as part of its Growth Initiatives for Teachers Program. Seventh-grade math teacher Delores L. McClain and her teaching partner, Yvonne D. Brannum, have been awarded $12,000 for an educational project on satellites that they created. They will use $5,000 for their professional development and $7,000 for a school enrichment program.
McClain and Brannum were among 60 teacher teams from 30 states and the District that won $12,000 grants for creating math and science projects with their seventh-grade students. Brannum and McClain's project was titled "Heard It Through the Space Vine," and it introduced students to the technology of satellite imagery.
CAPTION: Alesia B. Slocumb-Bradford is the winner of the Mid-Atlantic Excellence in Teaching Award by the National Council of Negro Women and Shell Oil Co. Slocumb-Bradford, 34, teaches math at Thomas Jefferson High.