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EMS Student Honored at Morris County’s Middle School Leadership Award Dinner


EMS Student Honored at Morris County’s Middle School Leadership Award Dinner

 Ava Thomas at EMS in front of EMS Eagle mural  

ROXBURY, NJ (May 3, 2019) – Roxbury Township Public Schools is proud to announce that one of its students, Ava Thomas, an eighth-grader at Eisenhower Middle School (EMS), received the Morris County Superintendent’s Middle School Leadership Award (MSLA) by the Morris County Association of School Administrators (MCASA) on Wednesday night at the Hanover Marriott in Whippany.  

Ava Thomas with EMS Staff members  This award is for graduating middle school students whose actions and deeds “represent a model of citizenship and leadership in their respective school community”.  

Each middle school in the county selects one student from each middle school in their district to receive this honor based on academic, extracurricular, and community leadership that has had a positive impact on their school environment and someone who serves as role models for others.  

Ava Thomas with her plaque, principal, and family at the MSLA Dinner EMS Assistant Principal Elizabeth Omegna explained the selection process. “It began with four nominations per eighth-grade team in that they nominate two men and two women who demonstrate leadership in the classroom and through sports, activities, and known outside events. Of the 12 candidates, each is given a packet from MCL that is a bio and EMS staff added a brief essay to get to know each candidate. All applicant packets are coded anonymously, uploaded and all EMS staff and support staff can read and nominate in a Google survey. Largest consensus determines the winner.” 

Principal Paul Gallagher shared why Ava was chosen. “Ava consistently demonstrates leadership as a student, athlete, friend, and member of the Roxbury community. She serves her classmates as Student Council Secretary and her school through Peer Leaders and her community as a member of the EMS Builders Club. Ava plays basketball for EMS and Roxbury Recreation and is also a member of the Roxbury Jr. Gaels Cheerleading team.” 

Adding, “Most importantly, Ava leads by example each and every day. Whether it’s in the classroom, lunchroom, hallway or beyond, she can always be counted on to give her best effort, stand up for what is right and come to the aid of those in need. Ava’s positive energy is matched only by her courageous spirit, compassionate heart, and contagious smile. She has truly made EMS a better place and will be sorely missed when she moves up to Roxbury High School.” 

Ava was presented a personalized plaque to commemorate this award along with a group photo of the recipients by the MCASA.  

PHOTO ATTACHED (courtesy of Eisenhower Middle School)


For more information, contact: Roxbury Community School/Community Relations Coordinator Ann Rhodes at or 973-584-7699.



Roxbury Public Schools is a K-12 school district preparing the children of today for tomorrow. As a dynamic and thriving district, in partnership with a supportive and collaborative community, Roxbury Public Schools inspires and empowers all learners to flourish as ethical and global citizens in the 21st century. The district serves students throughout Roxbury Township, New Jersey, including the areas of Landing, Kenvil, Succasunna, Ledgewood, Mount Arlington, Port Morris, Flanders, and Wharton. Connect with us online at or on Facebook at