FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Heather Strickland – firstname.lastname@example.org, 919-821-9564
RALEIGH, NC— Community leaders from across the state were officially sworn in as members of The North Carolina Partnership for Children’s (NCPC) Board of Directors. NCPC is the organization that leads Smart Start across the state. As part of the 26-member board, these new members will provide oversight to ensure that all North Carolina children have access to the high quality early care and education, health, and family support services they need to thrive.
“This is an outstanding group of new members that will further enhance Smart Start’s ability to ensure that every child arrives at school healthy and ready to succeed,” said Dr. Nancy H. Brown, Board Chair of NCPC. “We are very pleased to welcome these community leaders to our dedicated Board of Directors.”
The new members of the NCPC Board of Directors include:
Ms. Lorie Barnes – Barnes is Executive Director at the North Carolina Association for the Education of Young Children (NCaeyc). NCaeyc is the state affiliate of the National Associate for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and promotes and inspires excellence in the early care and education of young children birth through age eight.
Mr. Robert Eagle – Eagle is Vice President and Treasurer of Eagle Holdings & Development and was a member of the initial Board of Directors of NCPC. As a child care provider for almost 30 years, he worked to formulate business practices and policies that would ensure a quality experience for the thousands of children served by nine centers in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area.
Mr. John “Zac” Everhart – Everhart is a member of the Board of Directors for Craven Smart Start and co-owner of the Excel Learning Centers. Excel Learning Centers currently care for over 2,000 children and employ 375 child care providers in Carteret, Craven, and Onslow counties.
Ms. Joan Graham – Graham is the owner of Kids `R` Kids in Greensboro, NC. Since 2006, she has worked to provide innovative facilities and effective educational programs for children six weeks through 12 years of age in the Triad area.
Ms. Anna Mercer-McLean – Mercer-McLean has been in the early childhood education field for over 23 years. She is currently the Director of the Community School for People Under Six in Carrboro, NC and has been an advocate for high quality early care and education for all children, specifically low and moderate income children and their families.
Mr. Douglas S. Punger, Sr. – Punger served as General Counsel for the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Board of Education for approximately 33 years, retiring in 2006. Currently, he serves as Chairman of the Board of Smart Start of Forsyth County and on the Board of the Arts Based School, a charter School in Winston-Salem.
Dr. Rosemary Fernandez Stein – Stein is a pediatrician with over 26 years experience and is the owner of International Family Clinic (IFC) Pediatrics in Burlington, NC. She graduated from Universidad Nacional Pedro Henriquez Urena a Medical School in the Dominican Republic.
In addition to the new appointments, Governor McCrory reappointed the following NCPC board members: Dr. Nancy H. Brown, Pearl Burris-Floyd, Charles Morris, James Morrison, and Carole Wilson.
From left to right: Rosemary Fernandez Stein, Douglas S. Punger, Anna Mercer-McLean, Joan Graham, Robert Eagle, John “Zac" Everhart, Lorie Barnes, NC Supreme Court Chief Justice Paul M. Newby.
Smart Start, a network of nonprofit local partnerships led by The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. (NCPC), creates innovative solutions to measurably increase learning and the healthy development of children birth to five. Smart Start gives local communities the freedom and responsibility to determine how to increase the health, well-being and development of their children based on the needs and resources of their local communities. NCPC establishes measurable statewide goals and communities determine the best approach to achieving them. Click here for more information.