Napoleon leaves after 39 years

Physical Education Department Head Julie Napoleon will be leaving after 39 years teaching at Marlborough. Napoleon has served as the head of the physical education department, head coach of both the Varsity and 7th and 8th grade gymnastic teams and as a teacher in the P.E. department. She worked as the Director of Summer School from 1999 to 2017, expanding the program to incorporate Camp Mustang, afternoon athletics and the Student Worker Program.

Since 1980, Napoleon has guided the P.E. department and has expanded the program to include many new courses, including yoga, self defense, and athlete’s conditioning. In addition, she has developed many of the middle school P.E. programs.

“[My favorite part about Marlborough] has been developing programs that have made an impact. I’ve really enjoyed planning and implementing things that enrich people’s lives and help them have a better experience at school,” Napoleon said.

After Marlborough, Napoleon plans on spending her summers at her family cottage in Minnesota. She wants to return to Los Angeles during the winter, where she will spend her time volunteering as a foster parent, and as a mentor to teenagers in the probation system.

Napoleon said she found a passion for working with teens while teaching at Marlborough.

“One of my favorite experiences was teaching the daughters of alumni I had taught in the past. I have had hundreds of students who I’ve taught, and I’ll miss the experiences I’ve had with them,” Napoleon said.

Athletic instructor Tinka Brown who has worked with Napoleon for over 30 years said that she will miss the positive energy that Napoleon always brought to campus.

“She’s been the backbone of our department,” Brown said. “She’s the strongest advocate and voice that our department could have had, always standing up for what’s right and students’ needs. She’s just a really good human being.”

Napoleon said that she is excited for her plans in the future.

“I want to focus on giving myself back to the community. But I’ve loved seeing how talented the students are over the years. I’ve really enjoyed being part of the whole school community and I’m really going to miss it,” Napoleon said. 

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