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March 7, 2024

Laguna Beach Unified School District leaders honored as 2024 Administrators of the Year for Orange County 

LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. – On Tuesday, the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) Region 17, which covers all

ACSA Classified Administrator of the Year Victoria Webber with the Laguna Beach leadership team

ACSA Classified Administrator of the Year Victoria Webber with the Laguna Beach Unified Leadership Executive Board and Superintendent Viloria

school districts in Orange County, announced its 2024 Administrators of the Year including two Laguna Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) administrators. Victoria Webber, executive assistant to the superintendent and board, was named the Classified Leader of the Year, and El Morro Elementary School Principal Julie Hatchel, Ed.D., was named the Elementary Principal of the Year.

ACSA is the largest umbrella organization for school leaders in the nation. Region 17 focuses on serving educational leaders in the pursuit of equity and excellence to meet the diverse needs of all students in Orange County. One of ACSA’s priorities is to ensure that school leaders are recognized for their excellence and dedication to public education; administrators of the year are selected for their outstanding performance and achievement in their respective categories.

"Victoria is a leader within LBUSD. While her official title is Executive Assistant to the Superintendent, that barely scratches the surface of her contributions to our team of five school board members," said LBUSD Board of Education President Jan Vickers. "From agenda preparation and minute-taking to planning and scheduling meetings around multiple calendars, the tasks she manages are both critical and time-consuming. Beyond these responsibilities, Victoria adeptly supports the superintendent and his leadership team with thoroughness and efficiency. Her expertise in Robert's Rules, the Brown Act, and meeting protocols is invaluable, providing us with the guidance and direction we need. I have complete trust in her. And, as a bonus, she's genuinely a wonderful person," she concluded.
Candidates for the award are nominated by their peers and are selected for their outstanding performance and achievement in their respective categories.

"I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to be recognized by ACSA and my fellow colleagues,” said Victoria Webber. “The ACSA Awards program shines a light on the dedication of school leaders, and I am honored to be a part of that."

With over 25 years of service in public education, Webber plays a crucial role in bridging communication amongst the governance team and ensuring organizational efficiency to facilitate effective school district governance.

ACSA Elementary Principal of the Year Julie Hatchel with her El Morro team

ACSA Elementary Principal of the Year Julie Hatchel, Ed.D., with her El Morro team

"We are incredibly proud to see two of our LBUSD administrators honored by ACSA Region 17. Victoria and Julie represent the best of what LBUSD stands for. Their dedication to our students and staff and commitment to innovative leadership has rightfully earned them the recognition of Classified Leader of the Year and Elementary Principal of the Year, respectively,” said LBUSD Superintendent Jason Viloria, Ed.D. “These awards are a testament not only to their exceptional contributions but also to the culture of excellence that defines LBUSD,” he concluded. 

Dr. Hatchel brings more than 30 years of experience in public education to LBUSD with an extensive background that includes teaching at elementary, middle, and high school levels and serving in site and district administration roles for over 20 years, with a particular passion for serving as a principal. 

"I have appreciated the opportunity to collaborate with ACSA in advocating for our students across the state. It has been a blessing to work with so many amazing people throughout my administrative career who are part of this recognition,” said Dr. Hatchel. She continued, “I am extremely grateful for my LBUSD and El Morro team, who have brought so much support and joy to the work that we are privileged to do for our kids."

ACSA Region 17 will recognize all award recipients at the Administrator of the Year Celebration of Excellence Dinner at the Irvine Marriott on May 13, 2024.

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