Skip to main content

Press Releases

Montgomery County Councilmember Rice selects Moira Johnson as "Councilmember for a Day"

For Immediate Release: Thursday, November 30, 2017

Montgomery Blair High School student Moira Johnson named “Councilmember for a Day”

Montgomery County Councilmember Craig Rice developed contest to provide students the opportunity to learn about local government, public policy, and leadership


ROCKVILLE, Md., November 30, 2017—Montgomery County Councilmember Craig Rice selected Moira Johnson from Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring as the winner of his “Councilmember for a Day” challenge.  Councilmember Rice, who chairs the Council’s Education Committee, developed the contest as a way for young people to become more engaged in public policy issues, learn about local government, and become more involved with the community.  

Councilmember Rice announced the winner at the Council’s Youth Town Hall reception at the Council Office Building on Nov. 29. Nine other finalists also were recognized at the reception.       

This is the second year for the “Councilmember for a Day” challenge. Councilmember Rice asked middle and high school students to submit YouTube videos or written essays answering the following questions:  

  • What is the most important public policy issue facing young people today? 
  • What are your ideas for dealing with this issue? 
  • What suggestions do you have for national, state, and/or local leaders to address this issue?   

Ms. Johnson’s winning entry was an essay that focused on parental illness and the impact it has on children.  Her essay can be read at  .   

“I’m always looking for innovative ways that the Council can help empower our young people to become more involved in public policy issues and more active in local government,” said Councilmember Rice.  “This year, I expanded the challenge to include students in middle schools because it’s never too early to start getting involved in helping to shape the future of our community.”   

Outreach for the contest was conducted through social media and in partnership with Montgomery County Public Schools.  Ms. Johnson will shadow Councilmember Rice for a full Council day on a date that will be determined after the winter break.      

“Since my office received nearly 100 entries from students, I am confident that this contest will be an annual Council tradition,” said Councilmember Rice. “With two daughters of my own, I know that spending quality time with young people benefits you as much as it educates them.”  

In addition to the winner Moira Johnson, nine other students were selected as finalists based on the quality and creativity of their entries. The other finalists were:   

  • Joey Barke from North Bethesda Middle School;
  • Pavan Bhat from Northwest High School;
  • Madeline Borger from Richard Montgomery High School;
  • Hannah Bush from Winston Churchill High School;
  • Tim Catindig from John F. Kennedy High School; 
  • Amy Ritter from Quince Orchard High School;  
  • Alix Swann from Montgomery Blair High School;
  • Angela Yu from Robert Frost Middle School; and
  • Heldana Yared from Montgomery Blair High School.  

A video clip from the reception for the “Councilmember for a Day” finalists can be viewed at:  .


# # # Release ID: 17-373
Media Contact: Sonya Healy 2407777926, Delphine Harriston 2407777931