O'Brien Receives Honor from State OrganizationPort Byron Superintendent Neil O’Brien was recently chosen to receive the New York State Council of School Superintendents’ Appreciation Award for 2021.
O’Brien will be honored at NYSCOSS’ Virtual Winter Institute and Lobby Day on March 8.
“A great choice,” said Mike Ford, the director of leadership development at NYSCOSS. “[O’Brien] has been a tireless advocate for students across the state. He is smart, witty, and tenacious. Proud to call him a friend.”
O’Brien is finishing up his 17th and final school year in the district. He is set to retire in June, with current Dana L. West Jr.-Sr. High School Principal Mike Jorgensen in line to be his successor.
O'Brien described his run as remarkable and rewarding, and likens his role to being the manager of a successful baseball team. While the district has achieved many of its goals, O’Brien shares the credit with his staff and Board of Education.
“An award from my colleagues from around the state is an incredible honor,” O’Brien said. “I am extremely thankful for the recognition and the wonderful support and encouragement I receive from the school board and community of Port Byron.”
The congratulations poured in from across the state for O’Brien on social media, including from Maureen Donahue, the superintendent of the Southwestern Central School District.
“Congratulations to my life-long friend and colleague,” Donahue tweeted. “Neil’s advocacy on behalf of kids across NY has made a huge impact for all of us in education.”
NYSCOSS is a professional and advocacy organization with over a century of service to school superintendents, providing members with professional development opportunities, publications and personal services.