BPE is pleased to announce the appointments of Shelley Olsen as Middle School Principal and Dana Brown as High School Principal of Dearborn STEM Academy. Ms. Olsen and Mr. Brown are both terrific school leaders, and together form a team who will lead our efforts to become a true STEM Academy able to prepare all students with the skills and competencies they will need in the years to come.

As we move into the new building, and the school expands, we felt that the time was right to create two leadership positions: one for the Middle School and one for the High School. We promoted Shelley Olsen – who has done a wonderful job serving as our Director of Instruction for Mathematics and then as Interim Principal since March – into the Middle School Principal position.

We then formed a Hiring Committee to perform a national search for a High School Principal. After reviewing a number of applications and interviewing three finalists, the committee selected Dana Brown as the Dearborn’s next HS Principal. The Committee found Mr. Brown to be incredibly approachable and available to students, families and staff – the kind of principal who will be present all around the school and at school events. Mr. Brown has been Principal of the Year in Massachusetts, has worked hard on issues of socio-emotional wellness, and built out one of the pioneer Early College programs in the state.

We want to thank the members of the Hiring Committee for their outstanding work to interview and choose the Dearborn’s next High School Principal. The members of the committee were: Aaron Alexius, Dearborn teacher; Francilliana Barbosa, Dearborn student; Meicail Constant, Dearborn student; Sherrice Grogan, Dearborn parent; Edna Leith, Dearborn teacher; Tim Likosky, Dearborn HS guidance counselor; Shelley Olsen, Interim Principal; Carla Pires, Dearborn student; Devon Thompson, Dearborn student; Brad Turner, Roxbury Presbyterian Church & the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization; Dan Anderson, Superintendent’s representative; Jesse Solomon, BPE.

More about our two principals:

Shelley Olsen (Middle School Principal) has been a member of the Dearborn community for two years, serving as the Director of Instruction for Mathematics, and as the Dearborn’s Interim Principal for the last four months.  She has worked closely with Dearborn students and teachers to ensure that math instruction pushes students to think deeply about mathematics and explain their reasoning. Ms. Olsen has a Master’s in School Leadership from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Ms. Olsen is incredibly excited to continue her work at the Dearborn,  and in particular, to work closely with middle school students, families, and staff.


Dana Brown (High School Principal) brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the Dearborn, serving most recently as Interim Principal for Holyoke High School and prior to that, for thirteen years as the Principal at Malden High School, one of the largest and most diverse high schools in Massachusetts.  In 2015-16 Brown was named Principal of the Year by the Massachusetts Secondary Schools Administrators Association. Brown also served recently as the Executive Director of High School and Community Partnerships at Bunker Hill Community College, the largest Community College in Massachusetts. Mr. Brown is looking forward to sharing his knowledge and experiences with the DSA community as we continue building a robust early college program.  

All of us involved in the hiring process feel confident that Ms.Olsen and Mr. Brown will work effectively with school staff, students and families to continue increasing student achievement while we grow our school’s enrollment, move into brand new building and launch new STEM learning initiatives.