Judi Zanetti, the executive director of the Public Education Foundation of Marion County, was named the 2013 Margie Davidson “Leading Light” recipient recently in Tampa.
The award, handed out to one person annually by SUNSPRA, the Sunshine State School Public Relations Association, honors an individual who provides outstanding support to public education. The award, named in memory of the late St. John’s County communications director who championed the award process, began in 2002 with the recognition of then first lady, Columba Bush.
Zanetti’s presentation took place at the 68th Annual Joint Conference held on December 5, 2013. Zanetti was recognized for the role she played in launching a very successful “Tools 4 Teaching” program, a teacher supply store housed at the Foundation office.
During the 2012-2013 school year, Tools 4 Teaching logged 2,672 free teacher shopping visits and $121,040 in donated supplies. Since opening four years ago, Tools 4 Teaching has collected more than $400,000 in donated supplies and has provided 11,505 shopping visits for Marion County teachers.
Zanetti, a former kindergarten teacher and former Marion County school board member, spends time in the classroom mentoring students when not doing foundation business.
Nominees for the prestigious award must have contributed to an education program or project which created an environment of positive change in student achievement, school–community connections, career and technical education, and education advocacy.
In nominating her for the award, Kevin Christian, Public Relations Officer and Coordinator of Television Media Production for Marion County Public Schools, cites her “demonstrated patience, perseverance, and passion to improve her community and the classrooms of teaching colleagues.”
CONGRATULATIONS to Ft. King Middle School Future Farmer’s Association (FFA) Chapter and Advisor Lori Albritton for earning the National FFA Three Star Rating. This is one of the highest honors bestowed upon a chapter.
CONGRATULATIONS to The Marion Counseling Association award winners for 2012-13: Elementary School Counselor: Rosemary Burnett, Romeo Elementary; Middle School Counselor: Dee Holcomb, Horizon Academy; High School Counselor: Sue Breithaupt, Lake Weir High; Social Work Service: Rhonda Cole; Psychological Services: Lisa Stringfellow; Exceptional Student Education; R. J. Sumner; Student Services Support: Lynn Vachon, Social Work Assistant.