Donna Hoylman Peduto, executive director of the West Virginia Public Education Collaborative and education expert, will be receiving the WV KIDS COUNT 2021 Education Champion of Children award today in recognition of her lifelong commitment to making a difference in the lives of West Virginia children and families.
Throughout her 40-plus year career in public education, she has found purpose and passion in helping all West Virginia students secure the educational footing to succeed in school and in life. From her 23 years serving as a teacher in the classroom to working at nonprofits, innovative learning labs and for the West Virginia Board of Education, Peduto has been a champion for students and teachers every step of the way.
“It’s wonderful to see Donna recognized for her hard work and commitment to West Virginia’s students,” said West Virginia University Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Maryanne Reed, who oversees the WVPEC. “Not only does Donna have experience in just about every aspect of our state’s public education system, but at the helm of the WVPEC, she has led innovative approaches to help ensure students gain the education, skills and resources to prepare for our world’s ever-evolving workforce demands, even in a global pandemic.”
Over the past year and a half alone, Peduto has continued to elevate the WVPEC’s two staple initiatives, the Legislators’ Forum on Education and the Economy and Focus Forward. She has also launched two new programs, Sparking Early Literacy Growth and the K-12 Speaker’s Bureau, and led the creation of an online learning resource guide for families, students and educators during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Peduto also served as the ambassador for Remake Learning Days in West Virginia for the fourth year in a row and is coordinating a statewide STEAM initiative in partnership with the West Virginia Department of Education.
Reed also emphasized that Peduto understands the power of partnerships and collaboration.
“Donna tirelessly flexes her muscles behind the scenes to build a strong community of education leaders, and she continues to forge strategic relationships that advance innovative approaches to learning at all levels,” Reed added. “Her deep-rooted passion for education manifests in her work every day.”
Peduto will receive the award at the State of West Virginia’s Kids Virtual Summit and Awards ceremony in Charleston. She will join four other 2021 Champion of Children awardees, including Jennifer Garner, award winning actress, philanthropist, and entrepreneur; Srini Matam, President of Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia, Inc.; Dr. Christopher “Dino” Beckett, Chief Executive Officer of Williamson Health and Wellness Center, Inc.; and Woody Woods, Program Director and host of the Woody Woods Show on 98.7 The Beat, a West Virginia Radio Corporation station.
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