GMercyU Alums Receive National Educational Leadership Awards

Crystal Edwards, EdD ’20, Alphonso Evans ’03 ’19, and Heather Mull Miller ’17 are three of seven administrators receiving the 2023 Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Principal Leadership. The Lindback Award recognizes leadership and humanitarian contributions of principals and is accompanied by a $20,000 award for the school.

Dr. Edwards, principal of William D. Kelley Elementary School in Philadelphia, Pa., plans to utilize the funds to update books, magazines, and literature in the school’s library to reflect her student body.

“We want our children to be in a school where they’re loved and respected by people who want to be here,” Dr. Edwards told The Philadelphia Tribune. “We also want our children to have the right to live and be educated accordingly. Anything they need to succeed will be in this building.”

Dr. Edwards earned her Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Gwynedd Mercy University. GMercyU's EdD program has a year-to-year retention rate of 93% and a graduation rate of 76% in just three years, nearly double the national average of 41% in 10 years, according to a 2010 study done by the Council of Graduate Schools. Its groundbreaking degree completion option for students who are ABD (All But Dissertation) was the first in the country when it launched in 2016.

You can learn more about Dr. Edward’s journey to principal in The Philadelphia Tribute and the 2022 Spring Issue of Today Magazine.

Dr. Evans is principal of Stearne Elementary School in Philadelphia, Pa., and earned both his master’s in education and doctorate in education from Gwynedd Mercy University. He envisions the creation of a media studio for students to explore music, recording, journalism, and hopes the media studio “will be used as a vehicle to uplift the area of mentorship for scholars, which is an area that is not mandated within our educational system, but equally as important as academia,” Evans told The Philadelphia Inquirer.

You can learn more about Dr. Evans’ educational journey and leadership philosophy in the 2019 Summer Issue of Today Magazine.

Mull Miller, principal of Hunter Elementary School in Philadelphia, Pa., and earned her master’s in education at GMercyU. She plans to utilize the funds from the Award to create “a place that works to repair the sometimes broken relationship families have with schools, a place children are heard and loved, a safe place where kids can be kids and where kids can take the risk required to grow,” according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Learn more about all of GMercyU's Education program options.