In conjunction with the establishment of the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness, the OPSR Foundation was created to solicit and receive public and philanthropic funds. The foundation supports OPSR’s vision and mission by expanding the breadth in which our organization can financially support early childhood research, programs and initiatives.
In this capacity, the OPSR Foundation operates as a 501(c)3 organization. Currently, the foundation is made up of passionate, dedicated early childhood advocates, some of who worked to improve school readiness even before the formation of OPSR. Our foundation is proud of OPSR’s hard work over the past 15 years but knows there is much more to be gained if we continue to invest in our children from birth to the time they enter school.
We’d like to thank our current donors for their continued support of OPSR:
In addition to her work with the OPSR Foundation, Annie oversees George Kaiser Family Foundation’s (GKFF) early childhood education and common education initiatives. Before joining the GKFF in 2002, Annie worked in inner-city Los Angeles at a community-based youth development center. She serves as board president for Tulsa Educare and a board member for Tulsa Legacy Charter School. Annie is also a gubernatorial appointee on the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Board. She has a master’s degree in education, with an emphasis on learning disabilities, from the University of Texas at Austin and a dual bachelor’s degree in English and history, with a minor in classics, from Tulane University.
Janet is a retired teacher and longtime champion of the link between high quality early childhood experiences and success in education. Over the years, she taught special education, pre-K, Kindergarten and First Grade and served as an instructional coach in Tulsa Public Schools as well as an adjunct professor at Oklahoma State University.
Notably, Janet received the Oklahoma Medal for Excellence Award in Elementary Teaching in 2006 by the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence.
In addition to her work with OPSR, Janet is involved in her community as a member of the Tulsa Partnership for Children’s Behavioral Health with special work on steering, community and bridge building committees. Previously, she served on Tulsa Public Schools’ Wellness Policy Committee, the Oklahoma Early Childhood Teachers Association Board, Success by Six Board, and the North Central Association Plan Committee, to name a few.
She is married to Andy McKenzie, another 40-year early childhood educator and administrator, and they are proud of their two children and two grandchildren. She earned her bachelor's in special education and master's in early childhood and elementary education from the University of Tulsa.
Kathy has been with the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness since its inception in 2003. Her dedication to young children stems from her belief that “early education is the only way to succeed.” In fact, Kathy’s life has long been influenced by those who care about children and the future of our state as her father worked as a school principal and her mother a teacher.
Today, Kathy is the president of six licensed child care centers that have been operating for 35 years. Childcare, Inc. serves the OKC-Metro area and follows the philosophy that “children have the right to a nurturing, safe environment where they can feel comfortable and secure.” Kathy started this business when her daughter’s child care facility was closing and there were limited options for quality child care with positive learning experiences.
In addition, Kathy spends her time as an active member of the Oklahoma Child Care Association and the Chickasaw Nation. Kathy and her husband also own the Lake Texoma Lodge and Resort in Meade, Okla. And she enjoys being a grandmother to her grandchildren ranging from ages two to nine.
As a longtime supporter of OSPR, Jerry is proud that Oklahoma is recognized as a national leader in early childhood development. He is retired executive director of the University of Oklahoma (OU) Alumni Association, but currently serves on numerous boards including Friends of the Capitol, Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics (OSSM), ASTEC Charter School, Oklahoma History Center and YMCA International. Jerry is a member of Rotary Club, most recently serving on the Council on Legislation for Rotary International (2017-18). In fact, as chairman of Forward Oklahoma’s Board of Directors, Jerry worked and encouraged the creation of the Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics.
In addition to his many community roles, Jerry, a nationally certified physician assistant, was a member of the Walter Reed Institute of Research Trauma Research Team as well as a founding member of the Missouri Academy of Physician Assistants and a founding member and president of the Illinois Academy of Physician Assistants.
Jerry is happily married, in his words, “to the most wonderful woman in the world,” and has six children: Charles, a chef who graduated from the Culinary Institute of America; David, a radiologist; John, a psychiatrist who graduated from OSSM and was president of his U.S. Naval Academy; Paula, who graduated from the University of Oklahoma; Nancy who graduated from OSSM and Trinity College in Dublin; and Will, an engineer who graduated from OSSM and OU.
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Bio Coming Soon!
Phil has been serving his community and state since 1976 when he began working as planning director of the Community Service Council of Greater Tulsa (CSC), and then served as executive director from 1984 to his retirement in 2016. Through his many years of experience, he developed knowledge and expertise in several areas, including school and community partnerships, maternal and child health, early care and learning, homelessness, community schools, mental health care, family support and preservation, child abuse prevention, long term care and developmental disabilities. His special interests included population analysis and its importance to effective community planning, and organizing P-20 planning initiatives for improved education outcomes and overall personal well-being.
In addition, Phil has been a part of, and/or led several state and local efforts addressing many human services, health, mental health, criminal justice and other issues. In the early 1990’s CSC took a leadership role in addressing early childhood needs. That role expanded in 1999 with Phil serving as resource staff for the Governor’s Task Force on Early Childhood Education, and initiating JumpStart Tulsa. He has provided guidance to the Tulsa Metropolitan Human Services Commission (MHSC), a partnership which has coordinated policy and resource planning among the major health and human services funders and decision makers in the Tulsa area since 1981. MHSC also was active in support of legislation creating the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness.
Phil was a founding member of the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness (OPSR) Board of Directors and helped establish the OPSR Foundation. He is a founding member and past President of the National Association of Planning Councils and still consults regionally and nationally on aspects of community planning addressing health, education and human service concerns. Phil has a bachelor’s degree in political science from Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, and an M.A. in urban studies and community development from the University of Tulsa.
Carl is a founding partner of Price Edwards & Company, the largest Oklahoma-based commercial real estate service company and of PEC Investment Properties, LLC, a related entity that has some ownership in real estate properties. For the past 9 years, he has been primarily involved in non-profit work and family business although he has continued to office at Price Edwards & Company and provided input and advice as needed.
He was the 2017 Commercial Real Estate Man of the Year awardee and inducted into the BIO Hall of Fame in 2015. Carl serves as chairman of the Board of Trustees of Presbyterian Health Foundation, member and past president of the Advisory Board of Directors of Leadership Oklahoma City, and chairman of the Board of Directors of United Way of Oklahoma City, to name a few.
Carl has been married for 45 years to Susan Rosman Edwards and has two daughters and four grandchildren. He earned his master’s in business administration from the University of Texas-Austin. Carl is a member and past elder of Westminster Presbyterian Church.
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During Bob’s professional life, he rose to senior executive level at The Williams Companies in Tulsa, Okla. Then in a second career move, Bob devoted his time to serving young children by creating and managing the Tulsa Children’s Coalition in 1991. This coalition operated eight programs for school-aged children and ten sites for children up to age four, including 250 infants and toddlers. In addition, he served as a volunteer consultant to Governor Keating’s Task Force on Early Childhood, which resulted in the legislation that created OPSR.
For his dedication to helping young children and their families, in 2018, Bob was name the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Champion for Children. And in 1997 he was recognized as the Children’s Advocate of the Year by the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy.
Volunteerism is an important aspect of Bob’s life and as such, he has been on several boards including the Lawton United Way Board of Directors, Tulsa Area United Way Board of Directors and Success By 6 Leadership Committee. He was also chair of Tulsa United Way’s agencies, the American Red Cross and Urban League.
Lindsay serves as program manager for Child Welfare Initiatives at the Arnall Family Foundation where she is responsible for developing engagement strategies, building partnerships and overseeing project implementation. Prior to joining the OPSR Foundation, she served as vice president of Saxum, an integrated marketing communications agency based in Oklahoma City.
She has a master’s degree from West Virginia University and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Central Oklahoma. In 2014, Lindsay was listed in the OKCBiz Achievers Under 40 and is a graduate of Linking Oklahoma City’s Young Adult Leaders (LOYAL) Class IV. She serves on the board of directors for ReMerge, a comprehensive female diversion program and is a member of the Oklahoma County Children and Families Council.
Liz McLaughlin is the co-founder of Oklahoma City non-profit Fields & Futures and co-owner, along with her husband Tim, of the OKC Energy FC. She was raised in Oklahoma and attended Putnam City West high school. She went on to obtain a degree in Information System Management from the University of Oklahoma. Liz has been married to her husband Tim for 26 years, and together they have 4 children. Liz has served on several community boards, but has scaled back her service so she can watch all of her kids play soccer. One of her children plays for the MLS Los Angeles football club and one plays for the SMU Mustangs. Another plays for the Deer Creek Antlers and has committed to the OCU Stars fall 2019. Otherwise, she loves travel, going to Energy games and volunteering as a basketball coach for the Police Athletic League.
Bio Coming Soon!
Debra has been the executive director of the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness since June 2010. With over 30 years of professional experience, she has developed expertise in organizing collaborative efforts at both community and state levels to create positive change for young children and their families. Prior to joining OPSR, Debra was employed by the Oklahoma State Department of Health, providing state level leadership for the Child Guidance program. She has a master’s degree in speech pathology from Kansas State University and extensive experience in providing services to young children with communication delays, state level program planning and administration, and community coalition building.