2011 Nassau BOCES Education Partner Award Honoree

Dr. Anael Alston

Dr. Anael Alston

Robert M. Finley Middle School 
Glen Cove City SD

Serving as principal of Robert M. Finley Middle School since 2005, Dr. Anael Alston has more than 16 years of experience as an administrator and teacher. During his tenure, Alston led a team of talented educators to take the school to award-winning status as a result of its overwhelming academic gains. The school was awarded the prestigious 2011 MetLife Foundation-National Association of Secondary School Principals "Breakthrough Schools" award for its dramatic turnaround, one of only five middle schools in the country to receive such an honor this year.

An accomplished athlete, Alston is a former Golden Gloves champion who won the Super Heavyweight open class division in 2004 while working as an assistant principal. In addition, he ran the New York City Marathon in 2010 as a member of the New York Road Runners Team for Kids, which raises money to provide free or low-cost school- and community-center-based health and fitness programs to New York City children.

He has been an adjunct lecturer at Hofstra University and a teaching assistant at Teachers College, Columbia University. In 2008, Alston competed both nationally and internationally for a slot in the National Institute for Urban School Leaders at Harvard University and was accepted with a scholarship.

In addition, Alston has written political commentary for Newsday, presented at statewide conferences, and given keynote speeches and lectures on school change and curriculum reform.

Alston earned a bachelor's degree at Hofstra University, a master's degree at the College of New Rochelle, and a doctorate in Curriculum and Teaching at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Originally from Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, Alston is one of nine children and attended New York City public schools.