Former Anne Arundel County School Superintendent Kevin Maxwell — who is now directing Prince George's County Public Schools — is among four finalists for the 2014 National Superintendent of the Year, an award co-sponsored by the American Association of School Administrators.

Before leaving in August to become CEO for the Prince George's County school system, Maxwell served for seven years in Anne Arundel, where he is credited with increasing the number of magnet programs across the district from two to eight. Over that period, the school system's enrollment in advanced placement courses rose 36 percent, and Maxwell guided the opening of the county's first performing and visual arts magnet program, at Bates Middle School in Annapolis.

Other finalists are Terry Grier of the Houston Independent School District, Michele Taylor of Calhoun (Ga.) City Schools and Alberto Carvalho of Miami-Dade (Fla.) Public Schools.

The winner will be announced at the association's National Conference on Education, Feb. 13-15, in Nashville, Tenn. This year marks the 27th anniversary of the award.

In a statement released through the Anne Arundel schools communications office, Maxwell said, "There is no greater honor than to be recognized by your peers. This recognition, as I have said before, is one I share with a great number of people in Anne Arundel County because it is the work that we did together that is reflected in this honor."