Finding Inspiration in Every Turn
It is with a profound sense of gratitude and admiration that I address each and every one of you who have stood alongside me in our collective journey towards building a brighter future for early childhood education in our community.
As previous Secretary and 2 termed President of our esteemed chapter SEIU 925; it has been my privilege to listen to the fears and concerns voiced by our members, and advocate for you. Our shared dedication to the profession and the well-being of our communities has been the driving force behind our efforts to confront challenges head-on and forge a path towards positive change.
I vividly recall the pivotal moment when I walked into the Union President's Office, Karen Hart, welcomed me with open arms as I shared my concerns regarding the potential impact of entitlement programs on our chapter. It was in that moment that the seeds of YES For Early Success were planted—a model designed to champion inclusion, respect, honor, and social justice for all, through a cooperative model.
In the face of the unprecedented challenges brought forth by the COVID-19 pandemic, Karen's wisdom echoed through the darkness, reminding me that even amidst sadness, there exists opportunity.
With unshakeable determination, Karen gathered a launch team and an initial board (Mary Curry, Patricia Bailey, Sabah Saed, Maria Villa, Pauli Owen, Holly Lindsey, Aida Rodriguez, and Gloria Vasquez); I extended the support with union members/officers (Guadalupe Magallan, Nimao Dahir, Sandra Sanchez, and Chelsea McElroy) whose dedication and commitment have been nothing short of inspiring. Together, we work collectively to foster outreach and engagement within our union to amplify our collective voice. Fueled by the steadfast support of our union staff, Cindy Elizalde, Tyler Bass-our megaphone, and Lady Shirley McElroy-Ray, we embarked on a journey to redefine the landscape of early childhood education in our state.
Diana Gasaway, the state Cooperative Director, introduced us to the strength of A Cooperative Model—an invaluable tool in our quest to weave business practices into a single, harmonious voice. As Karen Hart retired, I was left to draw upon the strength and knowledge of our collective to carry forth the vision.
In this pursuit, I found solace and support in the remarkable individuals who have stood by my side—the Pathways Enrichment Academy families, the DCYF Expansion Team, James P. Hill, Donna Curry Simon, Fay Curry, Kenny and Tasha Glover, my "10" Jane Fellows, and Leaders Shaping Leaders - NAFCC. Their wisdom whispered in my heart, serving as pillars of courage as we forged ahead.
Together, united in solidarity, we stand as
YES! FOR EARLY SUCCESS STATEWIDE COOPERATIVE
—a testament to the power of collective action and the enduring spirit of community.
In closing, I extend my deepest gratitude to each and every one of you for your unwavering dedication, resilience, and passion. It is through our collective efforts that we have paved the way for a brighter future—one where every child has the opportunity to thrive and
succeed within their own community.
With heartfelt appreciation and solidarity,