Simon Youth Foundation names Metro Schools principal as National Administrator of the Year

AOTY Billy Fellman with T. Clark%2c JMD & D. Simon.jpg Simon Youth Foundation has named Metro Schools' Academy at Hickory Hollow principal Billy Fellman as its 2016 National Administrator of the Year.

Fellman was honored on Sun., Nov 13 at an awards ceremony in Indianapolis, receiving a crystal plaque and a check for $1,500.

Simon Youth Foundation gives the award annually to a high-performing educator in its network of 29 academies across the country. These academies are built primarily in Simon shopping malls and help students who were once at-risk of dropping out of high school return and get their diploma, according to the foundation.

Fellman has served as principal at Simon Youth Academy at Hickory Hollow since 2012, but has spent his entire career serving students in the greater Nashville area.

"Since joining the staff at Hickory Hollow, he has produced more than 1,000 graduates, and collaborates with his students’ support network to ensure that those graduates have clear post-secondary plans," a press release announcing the award said.

Principal Fellman holds a bachelor’s degree in special education from Tennessee State University, and a master’s in education leadership from Trevecca Nazarene University.

“Billy is a rare administrator whose enthusiasm is contagious. He is able to motivate his staff and students to achieve some incredible results,” Simon Youth Foundation CEO Dr. J. Michael Durnil said. “Even among out extremely talented network of administrators around the country, his passion for his students stands out.’”

For more about the Simon Youth Foundation, visit