John M. Dodig Award
April 7, 2021
John Dodig retired in 2015 after eleven years serving as the principal of Staples High School. He left an indelible mark on the school as a caring, compassionate, energetic and enthusiastic leader. John maintained Staples’ very high academic, artistic and athletic standards while creating an atmosphere of community and inclusion that teachers and students genuinely loved. Born in New York City and raised in New Haven, John began working in his parent’s restaurant at 13. He earned a BA degree from Southern Connecticut State University, and a masters degree at Fairfield University. After graduation, John volunteered to work for the Jesuit Foreign Mission at Al Hikma University in Baghdad, Iraq as an assistant professor. A year later he had to flee the country with his co-workers when the government was overthrown. John has traveled to over 50 countries. He has taught middle school math in New Haven, and he has served as an assistant principal and as principal in several Connecticut communities. John was named Principal of the Year in both 1991 and in 2015.