A Letter to Dr. Price

By Julie Allen, Founder and CEO

There are supporters and there are Champions.  But there’s only one Dr. Price.

When we tell people about our partner high school, Lincoln North Star, the ”star” of the story is always its principal, Dr. Vann Price. Because to say that Lead Up would still be just an idea on a drawing board without Dr. Price isn’t an understatement.

When we asked our partner Nebraska Wesleyan to suggest a high school partner, Vice President for Campus Community T. J. McDowell didn’t hesitate: “North Star. Let’s go meet with Dr. Price.” And what great advice it turned out to be.

From that first introduction, it was clear that Dr. Price has mastered the highest calling of leadership:  creating the conditions to help others succeed.  You can feel it the minute you enter the school and hear it in the way she talks about the community in her care. So, I guess it shouldn’t be a surprise that she was enthusiastic about our plans to help North Star students reach their potential, grow into leaders and set out on new life paths they may not have considered themselves prepared for.

From helping to select Lead Up Student Leaders, integrating Lead Up into the North Star Community and providing feedback and support for programmatic ideas, Dr. Price has had an indelible impact on Lead Up and is an invaluable force in our success. 

Recently, we learned that Dr. Price, who has been at North Star since it opened in 2002, will be moving to a new position as LPS Supervisor for Secondary Personnel Services.  While we will miss her friendship and wise guidance, we know she will continue to inspire others and continue her commitment to ensuring all of Lincoln’s students have the opportunities and support they need to change the world.

To a remarkable leader and one of the nation’s finest principals: Thank you. We are Leading Up because of you.  If you’re still wondering about how much you matter to Lead Up and our wonderful students, read on.

Dear Dr. Price.

I remember going into your office confused as to why I was called out of class. Being told I was chosen to be in a program that would help me with college was the moment I saw my future get a little brighter. Since then it has been an adventure and in less than a week I will be graduating and preparing for college. 


Dear Dr. Price.

I remember getting a pass that said, “See Dr. Price” and I was so scared I was in trouble! When I got to the office I joined a table full of students and you said, “Who wants to go to college?” Right then and there I knew I was getting into something life-changing.  


Dear Dr. Price

Thank you for helping start Lead Up and introducing me to it. Your encouragement of our Lead Up activities has helped not just me but my fellow students keep going.