For the past twenty years, I have found passion and purpose in working within rural communities. Because the circumstances and challenges impacting rural areas are often different than those in urban and suburban areas, the importance of understanding rural community strengths and resources, the concerns and needs of children and families, and the cultural sensitivities unique to each area is critical to ensuring young children have equitable access to quality early learning experiences.
I believe rural families have a right to quality child-care centers and family child-care homes in the communities where they live. This is much more than a convenience issue for families, it is an issue that cuts to the core of the quality of life and economic development for Floridians that live in rural areas whether by choice, or circumstances. Organizations and associations that have the capability to help support practitioners in rural areas, should embrace and sustain this often-over-looked population within the field.
Whether as the Executive Director of the Early Learning Coalition of Northwest Florida or as a member of the Florida Association for the Education of Young Children, I will continue to work ensure early learning opportunities are developed and realized for rural Florida.
Treasurer / Fiscal Officer, 2019