Dr. Mikki Garcia, senior director of the SCCPSS Department for Exceptional Children, was awarded the prestigious 2009 Phil Pickens Leadership Award by the Georgia Department of Education’s Parent Mentor Partnership. The award was presented to Dr. Garcia on October 14, 2009 during the 8th Annual Parent Mentor Partnership Kick-off Conference held in Cordele, Georgia.
The Phil Pickens Leadership Award is a statewide honor recognizing outstanding leadership in the collaborative work between home, school and community to improve outcomes for students with disabilities; outstanding contribution to the Georgia Parent Mentor Partnership program; and consistent outstanding leadership accomplishments in special education.
Dr. Garcia has served as the district’s director of the Department for Exceptional Children since April 2001, and has the distinction of being the first special education administrator to receive the Georgia Council of Administrators of Special Education (G-CASE) New Special Education Administrator Award.
Dr. Garcia is the current president of G-CASE and president of the Georgia Federation Council for Exceptional Children (Ga- CEC), she is also a past member and chairperson of the Georgia Department of Education State Advisory Panel for Special Education and serves as advisor to the Parent Mentor Partnership Leadership Council.
The leadership award is named after Dr. Phil Pickens, a former Georgia Department of Education Special Education Director who dedicated more than 35 years to improving the education of children with disabilities, and who also founded the Georgia Parent Mentor Partnership in 2002.
The mission of the Georgia Parent Mentor Partnership is to build effective family, school, and community partnerships that lead to greater achievement for students with disabilities.
Since 2002, under the leadership of Dr. Garcia, the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System participates in this parent driven initiative which is headed by the Georgia Department of Education.