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Kelly Lawson

Phi Delta Kappa

African American news from Pasadena - Women of AchievementKelly Lawson is the current president of Phi Delta Kappa, a national sorority of professional educators. Lawson is an educator who is passionate about literacy. The desire to help others learn to read is what drives her. Following her graduation from UCLA she went to work at the Department of Public Social Services. As a Social Worker she saw many parents who had a High School Diploma's but couldn't read. She was determined to do something about it. She returned to school, earning a Masters at Cal State University Los Angeles and a Doctorate in Education from USC. Today she serves as principal of Burbank Elementary School in Pasadena. She was previously the Principal of Noyes Elementary

School, following years of teaching in the Los Angeles Unified School District. She has attacked literacy since she observed its power. She believes that as a Principal and administrator she can have a great influence on literacy because she can help the teachers under her supervision improve the skills of all students.

The programs under her leadership of Phi Delta Kappa include an annual Teacher Rama, dedicated to closing the achievement gap between African American students and other students. Their annual Books and Breakfast program targets a school and gives out free books. Other programs include their competitive Jean Shehee Special Education Grant to a Special Education teacher, and the Xinos and Kudos program teaching leadership skills to students through community service.

In her spare time this inspirational educator is working on two books including one on leadership. Lawson grew up in Duarte California and became the first in her family to attain a college degree. Her goal, both as an organizational leader and school administrator, is to continue promoting the highest ideals for educators and to make a difference in the lives of our youth. She knows that the challenge will take teamwork between parents, teachers and students. She is an achiever who is up to leading the challenge.


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