Congratulations to longtime educator Marsha L. Aaronson for being selected as the 2021 recipient of the F. Laird Evans Outstanding Volunteer Award.
Aaronson has chaired peer review visits for Middle State- accredited schools around the world, including schools in the United States, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. She also served as a member of the International Schools Advisory Committee for Middle States.
With a career spanning nearly four decades, Aaronson has served in leadership positions at several schools in the United States and abroad, including the American International School in Israel, where she was head of school, and the Carol Morgan School in the Dominican Republic, where she was the middle school principal. She also served as a guidance counselor at the American Community School of Athens Greece and at the Community School in Tehran, Iran.
Q. Why do you volunteer with Middle States?
A. Audrey Hepburn is quoted as saying: “As you grow older, you will discover you have two hands. One for helping yourself and one for helping others.” The profession has given me a lot, and I feel like I have a responsibility to be involved. Every time I go on an accreditation visit, I come away knowing something I didn’t know before.
Q. You’ve traveled to upwards of 60 countries. Of all the places you’ve visited, do you have a favorite?
A. Every part of the world has something special to give if you keep your eyes open. I really haven’t found a place I didn’t like.
Q. What books are on your nightstand?
A. I just finished the Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris, which was phenomenal, and I’m now starting One Summer by Bill Bryson.
About the Volunteer Awards
Presented annually, the F. Laird Evans Outstanding Volunteer Award and the Susan K. Nicklas Outstanding Volunteer Award recognize dedicated volunteers who have advanced the mission of the Middle States Association to foster continuous school improvement through accreditation so all students receive the highest quality education possible.
Volunteers serve on accreditation teams that evaluate schools based on an established set of protocols and standards designed to reflect proven practices in education.
F. Laird Evans is the former president of the Middle States Commission on Elementary Schools and an ardent supporter of school accreditation. He served from from 1996 to 2010.
Nicklas served as the executive director of the Middle States Commissions on Secondary Schools from 2002 to 2005 and was a member of the staff since 1993