Dr. Akil E. Ross, Sr.

Dr. Akil E. Ross, Sr., named the 2018 National Principal of the Year by the National Association of Secondary School Principals, knows that to truly be an effective difference maker, you must be willing to work as part of a team.

Under Ross’s 7-year leadership, Chapin High School of South Carolina saw incredible growth. Chapin High School was awarded South Carolina Palmetto’s Finest Award in 2015, and in 2016 graduation rates reached a high of 96 percent with a 16-point increase in math proficiency amongst African-American students. 

Ross’s mantra for the school is, “we are a thousand passions with one heartbeat,” and like a true difference maker, he strives to create a learning environment that challenges students while helping them cultivate and chase their own interests.

Ross continues to make a difference. Over the Summer of 2018, he took a new job in the school district, as Lexington-Richland 5’s director of secondary education that will allow him to coach and mentor instructional leaders.