Meet James

“I am seeking reelection to the Arlington School Board to ensure that Arlington Public Schools will continue to provide a world-class education that empowers every child to succeed, regardless of race, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, gender, language, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity.”

–  James S. Lander

James’ Leadership:

Delivering Effective Instruction that Meets the Needs of Every Child:

Responsive Government & Financial Stewardship

Elected School Board Chair – 2014

Elected School Board Vice-Chair – 2013

Improved collaboration and the working relationship between School and County Boards

Led Capital Improvement Plan, ensuring that every child will have a seat from which to learn

Instructional Priorities & Initiatives

Developed and implemented 2011-2017 APS Strategic Plan

Expanded foreign language opportunities for middle and high schools, to include American Sign Language

Launched Arlington Tech High School program, emphasizing project-based learning

Initiated a process to define the neighborhood program at Drew Model School

Expanded Minority Achievement Specialists to the elementary school level to ensure an early start on the foundational skills students need to be successful

Community Engagement & Civic Leadership

Established and convened Joint Facilities Advisory Committee (JFAC)

Created Multi-Modal Transportation Student Safety Special Committee

Established mentoring program for middle school boys and girls

Founded annual Color of Leadership Conference

Supported and funded Family and Community Engagement Policy (FACE)

Appointed Member, Virginia Interstate Council for the Education of Military Children

When not serving the Arlington community, James works at the Consumer Federation of America as the Military Saves Director. He is a Gulf War veteran, and was recalled to active service after September 11, 2001, in support of Operation Iraqi/Enduring Freedom. James was educated in the Philadelphia Public Schools and earned his bachelor’s degree in marine engineering from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, as well as his master’s degree in systems engineering from the University of Virginia.


James has long appreciated the opportunities that a quality public education provides. He believes investment, commitment, and support for public education will provide children of all backgrounds a path to fulfilling their dreams and our hope for the future.


James, his wife, Monica, and their daughter, Kierstin, are residents of the Arlington Ridge neighborhood of South Arlington.