Extraordinary Teen Awards 2015

Our second annual teen competition honors outstanding high school students in Arlington, Falls Church and McLean.

Daniel Marshall

St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes School

Daniel Marshall’s life goal is admittedly grandiose. He wants to save the world.

“I am still trying to figure out what that constitutes,” says the 18-year-old Arlington resident. “For me, I think that would be in some way raising the standards of living.”

Photo by Michael Ventura

He’s already had an impact on the student culture at St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes School (SSSAS), where—in addition to playing three varsity sports, singing with the Gospel Voices choir, taking the most rigorous curriculum offered and consistently making dean’s or head’s list—he’s been an outspoken human rights advocate. “I would like to believe that I inspire others to be as comfortable with themselves as possible,” he says.

No stranger to the minority experience, Marshall is biracial and openly gay. He served as president of his school’s Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) for three years, and is involved with the Metro GSA Summit, The D.C. Center (a nonprofit dedicated to educating and empowering LGBT communities) and the national Student Diversity Leadership Conference. “I’ve seen how other people have been impacted by certain prejudices and pass on the torch about what I have learned,” he says.

KiKi Davis, director of multicultural education, diversity and equity initiatives at St. Stephen’s, sees Marshall as an influential student with just the right combination of charisma and authenticity. “He speaks out, but he is not intimidating. He is not pushy. He is so sincere that I think people believe him, and I think people respond to that in a positive way,” she says.

College counselor Libby Weith agrees. “He is genuinely interested in those around him and…in making a difference in the world,” she says.

“I really believe that if anyone is going to do it, it is going to be Daniel.”

A Latin scholar, Marshall has won numerous awards, held leadership positions with his school’s Latin Club and the Junior Classical League, and participated on the SSSAS Upper Level Certamen Team. Last summer, he attended the prestigious Virginia Governor’s Latin Academy.

His advisers are eager to see what he does next as he heads to Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in the fall. “I see him being at the forefront of a movement,” Davis says. “I see him as a real leader and a change agent.”     —Lindsey Brookbank