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Roberta Flack Headlines Standing Ovation Event at the Kennedy Center Tonight

Sunday, January 13, 2013
Monday, January 14, 2013

Contact: Melissa Salmanowitz | 202-535-1096

Tonight, the DC Public Education Fund will host the third annual A Standing Ovation to celebrate DC Public Schools’ (DCPS) Highly Effective teachers and leaders.  Joined by city officials and the business, education, arts, and philanthropic communities at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Roberta Flack will headline the event honoring the work and dedication of these special attendees.

“A Standing Ovation thanks our highest performing educators for the incredible work they do every single day in their classrooms,” said Chancellor Kaya Henderson. “These educators are gifted, dedicated and truly exceptional. I am thrilled to celebrate with them tonight and to showcase their talent, their commitment and their outstanding achievements.”

Ms. Flack is a singer, songwriter, and musician who is notable for her jazz, soul, R&B, and folk music, and who is also a former DC teacher.  Her early career began in DC with several nightly performances each week in area hot spots including the Tivoli Club, 1520 Club, and Mr. Henry's. Today, Ms. Flack performs to appreciative audiences around the world, and recently appeared with the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, DC, conducted by Marvin Hamlisch.

Thanks to the vision of George Stevens, Jr. and Grammy Award-winning performers like Roberta Flack, as well as a line-up of other prominent presenters, A Standing Ovation for DC Teachers has become a tradition that is considered one of the premiere education events in Washington, DC.

Standing Ovation honors the extraordinary educators of DC Public Schools,” said George Stevens, Jr.  “It is our way to give recognition to Washington's finest teachers and engage the broader community in the transformation of our schools.”

This year’s event is made possible through the support of this year’s co-chairs: Gina Adams, Corporate Vice President for Government Affairs for FedEx Corporation; Katherine Bradley, President of CityBridge Foundation; Debra L. Lee, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of BET; David Rubenstein, Co-Founder of The Carlyle Group; and, George Stevens, Jr., Producer of the Kennedy Center Honors.

Standing Ovation rewards a record number of DC Public School educators. Out of nearly 1,000 Highly Effective educators, seven extraordinary teachers will receive the 2012 Excellence in Teaching Award and one principal will receive the 2012 Excellence in Leadership Award.

Standing Ovation is a great opportunity to gather with people from across the city to showcase the extraordinary teachers and principals that are transforming DC Public Schools and accelerating student achievement,” said Catherine Townsend, President and Executive Director of DC Public Education Fund. “The event, which wouldn’t be possible without the vision and support of George Stevens, Jr. and David Rubenstein, is our unique way to celebrate and to give back to the Highly Effective educators who give their best to our students every day.”

This honor, which comes with a $10,000 prize, is possible thanks to the generosity of Mr. David Rubenstein, co-founder and managing director of the Carlyle Group and chairman of the Kennedy Center, who believes that Highly Effective educators should be rewarded for the important work they do every day.

Nominations are received throughout the school year by parents, teachers and community leaders.  To find out more and to vote for a 2013 teacher or principal, please visit the DC Public School website,

The DC Public Education Fund is a nonprofit dedicated to advancing excellence in DC Public Schools. All proceeds from Standing Ovation support DC Public Education Fund’s current work to create excellent teachers and leaders, engage students and families in learning, and develop innovative classrooms and schools. To learn more, visit