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CEOGC’s VP for Children and Families, Dr. Thea Wilson, has been announced as the President-elect for the Ohio Association for the Education of Young Children.

Ohio Association for the Education of Young Children is the official State Affiliate for the National Association for the Education of Young Children. (NAEYC). They are a diverse community of professionals who are passionate about serving children age 0-8. This includes but is not limited to: Center Directors & Administrators, Teachers, State Agency Employees, Family Care Providers, Social Workers, School Administrators, Early Intervention Specialists and College Faculty and Students. 

Dr. Wilson served on the Board of Directors for three years before being nominated by the current President. She was a unanimous vote to take over the reigns. “The gravity of being the president is making sure our association remains active in the community and ensuring that our membership has a voice,” said Dr. Wilson.

Dr. Wilson has been in early childhood education for more than 40 years and is deeply invested in making sure the youth of Cleveland are given the opportunity to grow and ultimately become successful members of society. “We are really invested in pushing early childhood education to the forefront, not only to families, but to our society,” said Dr. Wilson. “For every dollar you put into early education, you get nearly eight to 18 dollars back in the economy. You’ll have fewer people going to jail and more people going to college.”

For Dr. Wilson, being elected as President of OAEYC is a task she’s ready to prove she’s well qualified for. she is the first African-American female to attain this leadership position.

“The fact that I am the first black woman weighs heavy on my tenure to do well, but my mantra since I started as a teacher has always been it being all about the children,” said Dr. Wilson. “If we’re not doing right by these kids at an early age, it’s hard to get them on track later in life. I do what I do to ensure none of them go to prison; and I’ll continue to do it until the day I die.”