The 2017 Southern Early Childhood Association recently presented the President’s Award to Marilyn Bailey-Jefferson, ED.D, assistant professor in the Department of Human Sciences at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff.

Bailey-Jefferson is director of the UAPB Child Development Center and executive director of the Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership Project. She has successfully collaborated with 14 community partners in seven counties along with the university, a spokesman said in a news release.

At UAPB, Bailey-Jefferson is also facilitator of the Family Development, Assessment of Young Children and Administration and Supervision of Child Care Centers courses.

Bailey-Jefferson received the award at the Southern Early Childhood Association’s 68th annual conference at Biloxi, Mississippi, recently.

The award is presented to a state advocate for early childhood education for her/his contributions at the state level in the field of advocacy and contributions in fostering the professional growth and development of early childhood professionals, a spokesman said.

“My aim is to support our young early childhood professionals as they develop in wisdom and skill to take over when it is time for me to turn over the reins,” Bailey-Jefferson said.

Bailey-Jefferson was one of three Arkansans honored at the association, a 13-state regional organization of early childhood professionals and parents who share a common concern about the well-being of children.

Kathy Stegall received the SECA Outstanding Member Award and Elizabeth Scudder received the Marian B. Hamilton Award for outstanding leadership in pre-K education.