Kensington Teacher Receives Outstanding Teacher Award

August 24, 2007

With a talent for teaching children to express themselves and their gifts from God through art, Mrs. Mary Del Bianco has been selected as the 2007 Sister Mary Lucille, RSM, Outstanding Teacher Award recipient. She has taught art and computers to all grades at Holy Redeemer School in Kensington for 15 years. A special ceremony will be held on Monday, August 27 immediately following the opening Mass at 10:00 a.m. for the new school year at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. The award will be presented by Washington Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl.

“Mary Del Bianco encourages her students to celebrate and utilize their God given talents – that God has given each individual a way to express himself or herself through various art mediums. Each result is different, each should be respected and each should be celebrated,” said Mrs. Harriann Walker, principal at Holy Redeemer.

Three years ago, Del Bianco started a Fine Arts Festival, combining social justice with the creative arts, encouraging students to be responsible global Catholics. Last year’s theme, “Green,” focused on recycling and our responsibility to caring for the environment. The year before, the theme was “Art Bayou,” centering on the culture of New Orleans.

The Outstanding Teacher Award was created in 1996 through a donation by NBC Washington bureau chief and “Meet the Press” moderator Tim Russert. It is named in honor of one of his favorite teachers. The $1,500 award recognizes teachers from the Archdiocese who exemplify many of the attributes Russert admired in Sr. Mary Lucille. Educators must have five years experience in Catholic schools and be nominated by their principals.

Joseph E. McMahon, a parent of a Holy Redeemer student, said Del Bianco “encourages the students to embrace art in its many forms and specifically drives them to think outside the box when it comes to the creation and appreciation of art.”

Each year, two educators are recognized for their outstanding service to Catholic education. The elementary school winner is honored at the Back to School Mass and the high school recipient receives the award in the spring. The awards are made possible through the generosity of Russert and contributions from the Elementary School Principals’ Association and the High School Principals’ Association.

The Archdiocese of Washington is home to 106 archdiocesan and independent Catholic schools, including 81 elementary schools, educating nearly 32,000 students in Washington, DC and Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George’s and St. Mary’s counties in Maryland. Catholic school information is online at

Kathy Dempsey
Office of Communications
[email protected]