LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Kathleen Otal

Position: School Counselor
School: McLean High School
School District: Fairfax County Public Schools
City, State: McLean, VA

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Kathleen Otal was nominated by the Virginia School Counselor Association.

Ms. Otal was named the Virginia School Counselor of the Year. She's not just a bold leader - she's a shepherd leader. Ms. Otal charges forward toward change, but she doesn’t do anything alone. She builds relationships and invites others into what she is doing. She recognizes the strengths of others and brings those qualities out in people.  Ms. Otal shares her success with others in the most admirable way.

Ms. Otal shows up every day to work asking, “what can I do today to dismantle the barriers that prevent our students from achieving?” She's an ally who energizes her team and makes everyone around her better. She doesn’t just create meaningful change within her job, but for the profession itself, setting a standard for the vital role of school counselors.