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Principal Jacqueline Byrd Awarded $10,000
2005 Leonard Miller Principal Leadership Award Winner
Jacqueline Byrd, Principal of Reynolds Elementary, Duval County, has won the
statewide, $10,000 Leonard Miller Principal Leadership Award, 2004-2005, sponsored
by the Council for Educational Change, Florida's Educational Think Tank.
The annual Award is given to one Principal who has increased student achievement,
empowered effective teaching and learning, and fostered parent and community
involvement. The Award is a tribute to Leonard Miller who founded the Council
for Educational Change, and was dedicated to improving education.
Mrs. Byrd demonstrated her excellence in leadership by raising her school's
grade from a D to an A, increasing FCAT scores by 34% and pioneering numerous
staff development and community involvement programs. Dr. Elaine Liftin, President
of the Council for Educational Change the sponsor of the event, commented, "I
am extremely pleased to have a Principal and person like Jackie Byrd as this
year's award winner. Her leadership is an example of the very best in Florida
education. Her students and staff should be very proud."
Jackie Byrd was selected and awarded $10,000 after a rigorous screening and
interview process, including a site visit from education and corporate leaders.
The finalists were selected from among a pool of 285 prospects who have participated
in Council for Educational Change professional development programs and activities
focused on leadership. The other finalists were Kimberley Emmanuel from Poinciana
Park Elementary in Miami-Dade, Dr. Stacey Mancuso from Design and Architecture
Senior High in Miami-Dade, Cindy Massarelli from Choctawhatchee High in Okaloosa,
and Dr. Winston Whyte from Howard McMillan in Miami-Dade.
Steve Saiontz, the Council Chair, presented the Award at the University of
Miami on Oct. 19 to Mrs. Byrd. Among Mrs. Byrd's "rooting section"
at the event was her husband Jason and Duval Superintendent Dr. Nancy Snyder.
Her son and daughter, Jason and Jalyn, and teacher Carol Brown from her school,
surprised her at the event. A telephonic link to her school was established
so her students and staff could share in her experience. Mrs. Byrd is the third
award winner and the first from Duval. The two previous winners are: Bart Christie
of Miami-Dade and Dr. Pat Dixon of Broward. Bart Christie and Dr. Dixon were
present to pass the torch to Mrs. Byrd.
The event was sponsored by: the Cobb Family Foundation, Edward W. Easton, and
Richard & Susan Finkelstein.
More information about the Council and this Award can be found at