She Snoops for Scoops: The Personal Side of the EdNET Community

She Snoops for Scoops: The Personal Side of the EdNET Community

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Wear some green, eat some Irish food, imbibe an Irish drink, or celebrate as you choose. And, of course, be sure to read my scoops! There's lots to celebrate this week....

Kudos!

I have lots of good news this week as we celebrate stellar accomplishments by some of our friends and colleagues.

I was very happy to hear this week from Louise Dube, Executive Director of iCivics. Many of you, like me, have likely been following the impact of iCivics. Louise said the organization had over 5 million students on its platform this year and saw a huge spike in traffic before and since the election. And iCivics won Fast Company's 10 most innovative companies in education, along with Newsela, with whom they frequently work.

Louise has been nominated by Diane von Furstenberg for a DVF People's Voice Award. The DVF Awards was founded in 2010 by von Furstenberg and The Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation to recognize and support extraordinary women who are dedicated to transforming the lives of other women-women who have had the courage to fight, the power to survive, and the leadership to inspire. Louise is being recognized for her work in teaching about our system of government and the rule of law to middle and high schoolers at iCivics.

Each year, five awards are bestowed to women who have demonstrated leadership, strength, and courage in their commitment to women's causes. The Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation grants each honoree $50,000 for their non-profit organization in order to further their important work. Honorees are celebrated annually at the DVF Awards ceremony at the United Nations in New York City, as part of the Women in the World conference.

So...if they get enough votes, iCivics can win $50,000. The voting is open until March 22nd. You can learn more about the awards, Louise, and her work at iCivics and can vote at dvfawards.com. Please consider voting to support Louise and her organization—I did! And join me in congratulating her on her impressive work!

Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach) honored the amazing Deanne Mendoza, Co-owner of Teacher Created Materials, Inc., as the 2017 Woman of the Year for the 72nd Assembly District during a special Assembly ceremony at the State Capitol in Sacramento on March 6th.

In her role with Teacher Created Materials, Deanne oversees a variety of sales channels, including International, Business-to-Business, Specialty, and Trade as well as spearheading the company's community outreach. In addition to her business roles, Deanne is a volunteer in the community and the mother of three active children.

The annual Woman of the Year ceremony celebrates California's remarkable women. The tradition started in 1987 to help commemorate Women's History Month and has become an annual Capitol event to salute community service. During a special ceremony in the Assembly chambers honorees are presented with a framed resolution from the State Assembly recognizing their contributions.

Join me in congratulating Deanne on this wonderful recognition!

And I heard from Snehal Patel, Founder & CEO of Sokikom, this week as he shared the exciting news that Sokikom was recently invited to the Whitehouse to receive the 2016 Tibbetts award. The Tibbetts award is an annual recognition of high-performing organizations funded by the federal government's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (SBTT) programs. Every year, hundreds of companies participate in the SBIR program. Of those, some stand out as representative of the spirit and intent of the program. Each year the SBA recognizes those companies with the Tibbetts Award.

Named after Roland Tibbetts, the acknowledged father of the SBIR program, the prestigious Tibbetts Awards recognize those individuals, organizations, firms, or projects that made a visible technological impact on the socio-economic front and exemplify the very best in SBIR achievements. Award winners are selected based on the economic impact of their technological innovation and the extent to which that innovation served federal R&D needs, encouraged diverse participation, and increased the commercialization of federal research.

I have been so impressed with Snehal since I met him when he was first coming into our market, and I loved his passion and zeal. Snehal told me that of the 45 total recipients, the only other education technology company present was Agile Mind, which develops online math and science curriculum and assessments - and another respected company in our market. I want to share some excerpts from the awards program booklet about each company:

"Educators are often seen as innovators, an idea personified by Snehal Patel, educator, and founder of Sokikom. Sokikom is the only collaborative math program where elementary students help each other learn through a team-based game. Unlike any other math program, Sokikom was started through 6 SBIR grants from the U.S. Department of Education to positively impact the teaching and learning of mathematics in our nation. As a former math educator, Mr. Patel started Sokikom with the vision of not only creating a commercially viable, successful business, but also to make the world a better place by having a positive impact on the teaching and learning of mathematics in our country."

"Agile Mind was founded in 2002 to enhance one thing: the opportunity to learn. The company focuses on equity and high achievement in mathematics and science because of their importance to both the lives of students and the future of our nation....Agile Mind is dedicated to broadening student access, achievement, and persistence in challenging, contemporary mathematics and science courses and to honoring and supporting the practice of teaching, particularly for those educators who teach students least well served in mathematics and science. Core to Agile Mind's pedagogical approach is the knowledge that 21st century skills, such as motivation, positive self-belief, productive persistence, and sense of belonging are fundamental to success in school, college, and career."

Please read more about these companies and the awards program at https://www.sbir.gov/about-tibbetts-awards and join me in congratulating Snehal and the Sokikom team and Linda Chaput, Founder and CEO, and her team at Agile Mind on these well-deserved awards! We are so proud of you all!

And sad news to share once more....

Our friend Rita Oates, Oates Associates, lost her mother this week at the age of 96. She died peacefully on March 15th, and Rita said her mother defined a good life well lived! Visitation will be from 3:00-5:00 today, March 17th, at Warren-McElwain Mortuary in Lawrence, Kansas. Funeral services will be at 11:00 am Saturday, March 18th, at Trinity Lutheran Church, 1245 New Hampshire Street, and a reception will follow in the church social hall. Private inurnment services will be held at Pioneer Cemetery.

For those wishing to do so, memorial contributions may be made in memory of Rita Haugh to the Oscar and Rita Haugh Telecommunications Classroom at the KU School of Education through the KU Endowment Association; to Trinity Lutheran Church; or to the Endacott Society through the KU Alumni Association and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary.

Rita, you and your family are in our thoughts and prayers.

So much awesome news this week! And now to the St. Patrick's celebrations and a weekend! I took the younger grandkids to a community St. Paddy's parade last weekend to kick off the week, and I have corned beef and cabbage slow cooking for tonight's dinner. Go have yourself some Irish-themed fun! Till next Friday....Vicki, the Snoop

[Send me your scoops at bighamv@aol.com and be sure to follow me on Twitter @Snoops4Scoops #SheSnoops]