The Marie Wofford Professional Growth Award honors a GSPRA member who is a newcomer to the field of school public relations. Nominees must have two or fewer years of experience in school public relations. LaVerne was nominated by Jennifer Steedley, Director of Public Relations for Valdosta City Schools and selected by the current GSPRA board. Though she is new to the field of school public relations, she has been with the Lowndes County Schools since 2005. In addition to the Public Relations Director, LaVerne also serves as the District Parent Involvement and CPIE Coordinator, and she oversees the Lowndes Education Improvement Foundation (LEIF).
When she became the Director of Public Relations for Lowndes County Schools, she immediately joined the Georgia Public Relations Association (GSPRA). LaVerne serves on the Board of Directors for Lowndes Drug Action Council, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and the Workforce Education Support Team. Past awards and recognition include winning the 2008 Partnership District Award in Parent Involvement and being selected to serve on the State Superintendent’s Parent Advisory Council in 2010.
Chartered in 1973, the Georgia School Public Relations Association (GSPRA) is a professional organization for school communicators and school-community relations specialists. GSPRA is an affiliate of the National School Public Relations Association and has been designated a Blue Ribbon Chapter of NSPRA for the past twenty-five years. GSPRA members have also earned the prestigious Awards for Distinguished Service in both the single project and year-round project categories.