The National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies (NACCRRA) announced Patty Siegel as the winner of its Sandra J. Skolnick Public Policy Leadership Award. The award was presented at NACCRRA’s annual National Policy Symposium, held March 9-13, 2010, in Washington, D.C., by Terri McCullough, Chief of Staff to Secretary of the House, Nancy Pelosi. Siegel, a passionate early childhood education leader and advocate, was given the award in recognition of her steadfast commitment to improving the lives of children, families and communities across the state of California.
For more than 40 years, Ms. Siegel has been a champion for children and families. She has been actively involved in the development and delivery of child care services, combining perspectives as a parent, teacher, and as the founding director of one of the nation's first child care resource and referral agencies, The Childcare Switchboard in San Francisco. She also developed California's legislation that provides state funding for Child Care Resource and Referral services in every county in California.
Since 1980, Ms. Siegel has served as the Executive Director of the California Child Care Resource and Referral Network. As Executive Director, she plays an active role in shaping state and federal policy for children and families. Her current work includes the Child Care Initiative Project, a statewide public-private partnership to expand the supply of licensed quality child care by recruiting and training new family child care providers. She also inspired and guided the development of Parent Voices, a grassroots, parent-led effort to engage and empower parents to actively and successfully participate in the legislative process.
“NACCRRA is proud to be able to bestow this great honor on Ms. Siegel,” said Linda K. Smith, Executive Director of NACCRRA. “She has tirelessly worked to improve the lives of young children throughout the state of California and we are truly grateful for her contributions. Her efforts prove that one person truly can make a difference in the lives of many.”
The Sandra J. Skolnik Public Policy Leadership Award was established in 2008 to honor the life and work of Sandra J. Skolnik, a passionate visionary and a dedicated advocate for quality child care and education for young children. It is awarded annually to one outstanding individual who embodies the passion and commitment of Skolnik and contributes to realizing NACCRRA’s vision of a nation that supports the development and learning of all children by leading efforts to improve public policy.