Phil Johnson Receives Salkin Volunteer Service Award

Phil Johnson, a long-time parent volunteer, was honored with the Salkin Volunteer Service Award in recognition of his 18 years of service to The Country School. Sheila Salkin P '06, '08, '10, '16 joined Head of School John Fixx to make the presentation at the annual Holiday Program.

Established in 2015 during the school’s 60th Anniversary in honor of its founding by volunteer parents, the Salkin Volunteer Service recognizes an individual whose long-term leadership, commitment to, and fondness for The Country School have increased community awareness and support of the mission and goals of the school. Sheila Salkin, who served the school tirelessly during her two decades as a country School parent, was the award’s first recipient. 

Phil Johnson and his wife, Stephanie, Country School science teacher,
look on as Mr. Fixx introduces Sheila Salkin.



Although Mr. Fixx said Mr. Johnson prefers to be “behind the scenes and out of the spotlight,” teachers, administrators, and staff members took turns pointing out the many ways in which he has pitched in and made a difference over the last two decades. Here are a few examples:

  • Tireless chronicler of events and activities on campus through his photography, videos, and drone footage
  • Basketball, soccer, and tennis coach
  • Gaga pit builder
  • Weeder and planter in the Children’s garden
  • Field trip chaperone
  • Provider of tools for the Children’s Garden
  • Sod planter
  • Stump grinder
  • Tractor driver
  • Field mower
  • Snow clearer
  • Power washer
  • Chain sawer
  • Weed wacker
  • Window installer
  • Wood storer
  • Bench builder
  • Lab assistant
  • Co-chair of multiple Golf and Tennis Classics for Scholarship
  • Generous and continuous supporter of every annual fund, fundraising event, and capital campaign for the past 18 years
  • A key weapon in the 8th Grade-faculty basketball and soccer games

After Athletic Director Chris Wallack concluded the list of contributions by Mr. Johnson, Mr. Fixx had this to add:

If Phil Johnson knew he was going to be celebrated, he probably never would have done any of those things. Phil can do just about anything, but he never has a pencil….  So, before we give you the certificates, I’m going to make sure you always have a pencil.

Mr. Fixx presented Mr. Johnson with a special pencil holder, while audience members roared with laughter and then rose to their feet, giving Phil Johnson a well-deserved standing ovation for his remarkable service to our community.

Head of School John Fixx, Sheila Salkin, and Phil Johnson with Phil's new cache of pencils.

Congratulations and thank you, Phil. And thanks as well to the rest of the Johnson family -  to Stephanie, daughters Hannah '07 and Sarah '10, and son Wiley '18 - for so often working right alongside him, making our campus and community better and stronger, just as our school's volunteer founders and their families did in our earliest years.