Administrator Bios

  • Anika Horgan, Principal

    Anika Horgan joined Irving ISD in 2010 as an assistant principal at Lorenzo de Zavala MS.  Prior to coming to Irving, she worked in Dallas ISD as an academic specialist and a third and fourth grade teacher for six years.  Anika was named the interim principal at de Zavala in 2012.  She was then named the principal at de Zavala in 2013.  She enjoys serving the students and community of South Irving and has a strong belief that ALL students can learn.Anika holds a Bachelor of Science in Sociology from Missouri State University and a Masters of Educational Leadership from Lamar University.  She enjoys traveling, sports, and reading.



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  • Rose Neighbors, Assistant Principal

    From very young, Ms. Neighbors knew her passion was education.  She received her Bachelors of Science from Southwestern Assemblies of God University and her Masters in Educational Leadership from Stephen F. Austin University.  Ms. Neighbors is currently working on her doctorate degree with only 1 semester left. 

    Ms. Neighbors has taught middle school in Scurry-Rosser ISD, Maybank ISD and Waxahachie ISD.  Here she did ELA, Special Ed, reading improvement, and ESL.  When she came to Irving ISD in 2014, Rose was an Academic Specialist at Schultz Elementary. After serving as an AS at elementary, she began her career as an Assistant Principal, here in Irving, serving our students for the last 2.5 years.  Ms. Neighbors is excited to be a part of the DZ family and bring her expertise to our students and staff.



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  • Lilian Orozco, Assistant Principal

    Lilian Orozco is excited to serve at de Zavala for the 2018-19 academic year as the 7th Grade Assistant Principal. Her educational career expands ten years and includes serving students and teachers in Dallas and Grand Prairie ISD as a teacher, Advanced Academic Specialist, and mentor teacher


    It is Lilian's belief that all students deserve access to resources that will be equip them with the tools and skills to be creative problem solvers in an ever-changing world.



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  • Vanessa Smith, Administrative Liason

    Vanessa Smith joins de Zavala from Vivian Field Middle School in CFBISD. Prior to teaching, she served eight years in the United State Marine Corps and worked in the criminal justice field. Vanessa has a bachelor's degree in Family & Consumer Science from Texas Woman's University, a master's degree in Human Sciences from Stephen F. Austin State University and completed her certificate in Educational Leadership at Lamar University. 

    Over the last 10 years, she has taught several high school Family & Consumer Science courses; in which four of those years were at Nimitz High School here in Irving ISD.  She has also taught middle school science and special education contained classes, and most recently served as the Restorative Discipline & Campus Behavior Coordinator. 

    Vanessa enjoys traveling, crafting, cooking and spending time with her husband, four children, and extended family. She is excited to be returning to Irving ISD and looking forward to a great year at de Zavala Middle School.

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  • Tracey Bennett, Dean of Students

    Tracey Bennett became the Dean of Students in 2012. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of North Texas and a Master’s Degree in Child Development and Counseling from Texas Woman’s University. 

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