Posted on June 12th, 2019

June Smith passed from this earth on June 10, 2019 after having lived 94 full years of life. Throughout her lifetime, education was something that she held in high regard - for herself and others. Her father had graduated from the Oklahoma Normal School (now UCO) with a teaching license around 1910 and taught public school briefly near Comanche, OK. June followed the teaching path as well and received a degree in Business Education from the University of Oklahoma in the 1940s. 

However, after moving to Edmond with her husband and daughter in 1961, she realized that elementary education would be her calling. She became re-certified through Central State and received her master’s in Elementary Education from there as well. June spent twenty-one wonderful years teaching first grade at Orvis Risner Elementary from 1967-1987. She adored her time there and always spoke highly of her colleagues and administration. Her students were always held to very high standards and treated with the utmost respect. For June, teaching a child to read was one of life’s greatest thrills and she often reflected on how her classes grew to be a big “family” throughout the school year. 

In addition to being a caring and impactful teacher, she was also somewhat of a renegade for her time by becoming the first female teacher in Edmond to wear pants to work. It was obvious to her that teaching first grade required a bit more flexibility with one’s wardrobe! She also strongly advocated for the use of phonics and even at the end of her life, she loved to remind us that “when two vowels go walking, the first one does the talking."  

Lastly, June recognized the great legacy held by Edmond Public Schools as one of the finest districts in the state and a consistent recipient for many national recognitions of excellence. She was always an advocate for the needs of students and teachers and even maintained interest and passion during the Oklahoma Teacher Walkout in 2018. It would be an honor to her memory to have donations made toward the Edmond Public Schools Foundation.


Posted on April 26th, 2019

Job Location: Edmond, Oklahoma, United States
Reports To:  Executive Director
Hours:  15-20 hours per week with flexibility in scheduling
 
Job Description:

Edmond Public Schools Foundation (EPSF) seeks an enthusiastic, self-motivated and creative intern to support and grow our social media and marketing efforts. This position offers a unique opportunity to quickly gain knowledge and experience on the day-to-day efforts necessary to help non-profit organizations with their public relations, marketing, and event initiatives. The intern will work directly with the Executive Director, committee volunteers and occasionally interface with teachers and students. Those with strong writing skills, an interest in public relations, marketing and event planning and the nonprofit profession are particularly encouraged to apply.   Interns will:
  • Assist in creating a communications plan
  • Create a social media and communications calendar
  • Create social media content across platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube) and increase engagement
  • Create monthly communications engagement reports
  • Utilize HootSuite to schedule various posts
  • Create monthly newsletter to various stakeholder groups
  • Update distribution lists in MailChimp
  • Work with the Executive Director on special event marketing and promotional materials
  • Attend committee meetings
  • Occasionally update the web site
  • Update blogs and procure monthly guest bloggers
  • Assist with creating slideshows and videos
  • Collect impact stories to be utilized across all marketing platforms
  • Write donor and volunteer spotlights
  • Write press releases as needed
  • Other duties, as assigned
Job Requirements:
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills 
  • Strong social media proficiency with the ability to analyze social media data and impact
  • Excellent organization
  • Creative thinker and problem solver
  • Willingness to be flexible
  • Strong computer and internet skills; knowledge of and enthusiasm for web-based applications
  • High energy; commitment to the education and nonprofit professions
  • Ability to multitask, handle details, and work independently
Salary:
  • This is an unpaid internship
  • This position will offer students the opportunity to build their marketing and communications portfolio while bringing their classroom knowledge into a professional working environment
  • Interns will also have the opportunity to broaden their knowledge of the nonprofit sector
  • School credit must be arranged with your school
How to Apply:  Send your resume to [email protected]
Deadline:  Applications accepted throughout the year

Posted on April 12th, 2019

“The Edmond Public Schools Board of Directors is excited to welcome Deanna Boston to our organization.  She brings a wealth of knowledge and nonprofit experience that will benefit the board and in turn Edmond Public Schools.  “Deanna is passionate about public education and looks forward to building partnerships with members of the Edmond community.  We all realize that our school district is an integral part of our community – with Deanna on board, we hope to build and grow the impact the Edmond Public Schools Foundation will have on our faculty and student body!” 
- Cole Stanley, Edmond Public Schools Foundation Board President.

 
Dear Friends of Edmond,

I remember my teacher in 7th grade, Mrs. Randall, who recognized my interest in photography.  Not only did she recruit me for the yearbook, she made sure we had the equipment and supplies we needed to develop the photos in the darkroom (obviously before digital photography).  Although I am not a professional photographer, I still have that passion for photography today, but even more, I remember how she took an interest in me and helped me develop self-esteem and work ethic.

"The best way to predict your future is to create it." - Abraham Lincoln

Teachers help lead our children towards their future. It is only right that we provide teachers with the tools they need to lead and inspire our Edmond Public School students as they create the path to their futures, develop self-esteem and establish work ethic.

I am passionate about education and I feel privileged to utilize my nonprofit experience in the community I have called home for fourteen years. My story about how we landed in Edmond is not unique.  When moving back to the metro from Tulsa, my husband and I knew we wanted to live in Edmond because of the excellent schools and supportive community. My son attends Edmond Public Schools and will be a freshman next year. I have worked closely with his teachers throughout the years to get the supplies they needed, including writing grants to corporations to fund STEAM projects. I am honored to have the opportunity to do the same for all of the teachers in Edmond Public Schools.

I am excited to work with each of you as EPSF works to connect the community and its resources with Edmond Public Schools.  My first day was last Friday, where I attended the Hall of Fame event.  It was inspiring to meet so many people who support our schools and truly want to make a difference.  

The next big event that will bring support to our schools is the Red Day Run.  You can find more information below and register at this link.

To all of you I have met so far, thank you for welcoming me!  

Deanna Boston

Professional Biography

Deanna has twenty years experience as a professional in the nonprofit sector and has worked as an Executive Director, Chief Operating Officer (COO), Community Relations Director and consultant.

Deanna has a Master’s in Nonprofit Management, is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) and has additional nonprofit training from numerous institutions including the University of Pennsylvania, Lilly School of Philanthropy and BoardSource. She is a member of Alpha Sigma Nu, an honor society dedicated to service to others and a graduate of Leadership Tulsa. When working on her master’s degree, her research on telephone solicitations laws in all fifty states led to changes in Oklahoma nonprofit laws through the Oklahoma Charitable Solicitations Act.

As Executive Director and COO of Revitalize T-Town, she worked with the board to establish policies and procedures, helped grow the staff from one to seven employees and managed hundreds of volunteers. She helped lead Revitalize T-Town to 2351% growth in revenue over 17 years, which resulted in a 1108% increase in low-income homeowners living in safe and healthy homes. At Big Brothers Big Sisters, she managed several special events, as well as initiated and managed a weekly news series, “Kelly’s Kids,” on KWTV in Oklahoma City, which strategically targeted recruiting big brothers for boys who had waited over a year for a match.

She has shared her nonprofit knowledge and passion as a consultant in Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, Alabama and Washington D.C., where she used her skills in Organizational Analysis, Advancing the Small Nonprofit Organization, Grant Readiness and Research, Planning and Writing Successful Proposals, Board Roles and Responsibilities, Strategic Planning, Outcome Measurement, Public Relations, Special Events and Volunteerism.

Posted on January 1st, 2019

​After a successful five years leading the Edmond Public Schools Foundation, executive director Lori Dickinson Black has announced that she will be leaving at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.
 
“I’m incredibly proud of all we’ve accomplished in growing the EPS Foundation to raise more resources, friends and awareness for our schools – that was my goal when I started in 2014,” Dickinson Black said. “My initial goal was to create a sustainable, annual fundraising approach that would allow for a well-funded, structured granted system to support Edmond Public Schools’ students and teachers. It was equally important to raise awareness for the increasing needs in our schools as well as advocate for funding for schools in general to maintain and further the excellence that abounds in Edmond.”
 
During her tenure, just a few of the accomplishments the EPS Foundation has enjoyed:
 
• Increased annual funds raised by 150 percent from $160,000 to $400,000.
• Doubled classroom grant funds distributed by EPSF through Great Idea Grants from $90,000 to $185,000 annually.
• Increased the number of donors 400 percent from 150 to 800.
• Increased the net revenue of the Hall of Fame and golf tournament by more than 100 percent.
• Secured the largest single donation to Edmond Public Schools.
• Created an annual fundraising luncheon called “ONE Edmond” to secure annual and multi-year gifts.
• Created the Achieve Fund to help offset costs of students and teachers attending artistic and academic competitions.
• Advocated for important legislation to increase funding support for public schools.
• Improved the relevance and connection to EPS employees that has equated an increase in an annual workplace giving campaign from $10,000 to $55,000 – making EPS staff the largest donor to the EPS Foundation.
• Raised community awareness and involvement with the EPS Foundation that has resulted in being the recipient of the Common Thread for two years, this year’s Keller Williams Red Day Run, raffle of a $25,000 custom painted Harley Davidson and a 2019 VW Jetta.
• Created the “Celebration of Excellence” event to bring attention to and celebrate teaching excellence in Edmond and to award/name the EPS Teacher of the Year.
 
The mission of the Edmond Public School Foundation is to connect the community and its resources with the Edmond Public Schools teacher, student and school needs in pursuit of the highest level of academic excellence. 
 
Originally founded as the Edmond Educational Endowment, the organization was created in the early 1980′s as one of the first education foundations in the state of Oklahoma. In 1999, the organization formally changed its name to the Edmond Public Schools Foundation.
 
Since inception, the EPS Foundation has provided over $2.5 million in direct support to the district. These resources have funded: new technology, classroom curriculum, software, hardware, teaching aids, teacher trainings, student scholarships, playground equipment, textbooks, supplies, musical instruments, artwork, equipment, teacher awards, and numerous other educational aids. 
 
“My family moved to Edmond in 2012 specifically for the schools,” recalled Dickinson Black. “We knew it was the top district in the state, and we wanted our children to have great teachers and be in schools that received community support. Edmond has far exceeded our expectations.”
 
Dickinson Black will be turning her efforts toward a focus on growing her non-profit consulting business, volunteering in the schools, and increasing awareness of the need for mental health/counseling support in the schools.  “I’m not going anywhere as far as my commitment to continuing to support Edmond teachers and schools, I’m just changing my approach.”
 
To find out more about the EPS Board of Directors search for a new executive director or to apply, visit http://www.edmondpsf.org/position-search.htm
 

Posted on August 8th, 2018

Pictured from left to right: Jan Moran (AT&T), Debreon Davis (principal, Edmond North), Anthony Rose (principal, Edmond Memorial), Jason Hayes (principal, Edmond Santa Fe), and Lori Dickinson Black, EPS Foundation executive director.
AT&T Oklahoma has joined the efforts of the Edmond Public Schools Foundation by awarding $25,000 to fund the request, “IGNITE Innovation and Technology for Edmond High School Students.” An Edmond Public School district priority is to, “Plan and implement a quality STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) program K-12 to increase rigor and application, career exploration, project-based learning, HS Robotics, AP computer science, and GTT (gateway to technology) programs.” To this end, Edmond has formed an alliance with surrounding districts and the University of Central Oklahoma to create STEM committees at each school sight made up of members of the school and community. Yet, to fulfill this goal, teachers need greater access to the tools, materials and supplies that allow them to carry out critical hands-on science activities that are integral to student understanding of complex science principles. 
 
The IGNITE program in Edmond Public Schools will provide quality hands-on experiences that: 
•           spark innovative and technology solutions
•           foster in-depth understanding of science concepts
•           increase critical thinking 
•           make learning experiences more relevant
•           help students gain important real-world problem-solving skills
•           encourage healthy risk-taking and quick-thinking
•           build soft skills needed in the workforce
 
“We truly thank Jan Moran for being an ardent advocate for quality public education and to AT&T for this generous grant,” said Lori Dickinson Black, Edmond Public Schools Foundation executive director. “This gives our students the ability to experience learning on a whole new level. Failing, redesigning, being innovative, and problem-solving without consistent guidance are just some of the skills students will develop through this project. Studies provide evidence again and again that it is crucial for their ability to thrive in the workforce. When students can perform an experiment, the knowledge gained through experimentation is retained to a much high degree than if simply presented by an instructor.”
 
One teaching team at Edmond Memorial wrote that with hands-on science activities, “we have seen in just six months the transformation of students who never thought they could be engineers, designers, and researchers. They now question things that could benefit their community.” The grant makes it possible for nearly 7,000 students at Memorial, North and Santa Fe. “This truly is the definition of ONE Edmond that the EPSF Foundation promotes,” added Black. “Recognizing that while we can be proud to be a Bulldog, Husky or Wolf, it benefits our entire community to work together to support all of Edmond’s students and teachers collectively when we can.”
 
The mission of the Edmond Public Schools Foundation is to connect the community and its resources with Edmond Public Schools teacher, student and school needs in pursuit of the highest level of academic excellence. Since inception the EPS Foundation has provided over $2.4 million in direct support to the district. These resources have funded: new technology, classroom curriculum, software, hardware, teaching aids, teacher trainings, student scholarships, playground equipment, textbooks, supplies, musical instruments, artwork, equipment, teacher awards, and numerous other educational aids. To learn more about donating to Edmond Public Schools, go to www.edmondpsf.orgor contact the Edmond Public Schools Foundation at (405) 340-2819.