Following the departure of Educational First Steps (EFS) Executive Director Van Sheets late last year, EFS Programs Director Samantha Moya has served as EFS’s interim executive director. In the meantime a search got underway to find a new permanent executive director. The search paid off with former United Way of Tarrant County Senior VP of Development Vickie Allen being named to the role.
Having held numerous positions with Texas and Minneapolis nonprofits (WiNGS, Girl Scout Council of St. Croix Valley and the Jeremiah Program), she got her start “in sales for Fortune 500 companies and translated those skills to the nonprofit industry when she began volunteering and serving on board for various nonprofits.”
A graduate of Ithaca College, she earned a master’s in public administration from Harvard University.
According to EFS Board Chair Brett Kirstein, “We are very excited for Vickie to be joining Educational First Steps. She brings experienced leadership in operations and philanthropy, and she is passionate about growing the number of quality childhood education opportunities for at-risk children. As our organization seeks additional opportunities to grow our ability to serve more children and communities, we are confident Vickie can lead us there.”
With a mission “to increase the number of economically disadvantaged children receiving high-quality early childhood education through a results-driven program for becoming nationally accredited preschools, at no cost to the centers, teachers or parents,” EFS has grown since its start in South Dallas. Today it provides services for children in Collin, Denton, Grayson, Johnson and Tarrant counties.
* Graphic and photo courtesy of Educational First Steps