This is the first in a series of profiles on the 2018 Giraffe Award winners. Each week leading up to the Champions for Children Luncheon on November 15th, we will feature a profile on a 2018 Giraffe Award Winner and showcase how they “stick out their neck” for Maine children, youth and families. This week, we are pleased to introduce you to Kathy Colfer, Director of Child & Family Services at Kennebec Valley Community Action Program and Educare Central Maine.
Kathy Colfer has been deeply involved in the early care and education fields for the past two decades and has designed, developed and implemented programs for children, families and providers in both the private non-profit sector and public sector, including center-based, home visiting and family child care.
“For 20 years, Kathy has utilized her knowledge, skills, and passion to improve the lives of children and families in central Maine through the development of high quality early care and education. She knows that children thrive in a high-quality learning environment that nurtures the whole child and their family. Her passion is driven by the certainty that the success of our future workforce depends on how we foster children’s physical, social and emotional health from birth. We will miss Kathy greatly here at KVCAP and Educare Central Maine. Her accomplishments are many and the impact she has had on families and communities throughout Maine is profound.” –Suzanne Walsh, Chief Executive Officer of Kennebec Valley Community Action Program
Kathy believes a whole family approach is critical to accomplishing positive conditions that impact young children’s experiences and development and is an effective and sustainable strategy to support children’s school readiness, a quality workforce, and a prosperous Maine. She has been a strong advocate for community relationships between public, private and non-profit organizations to achieve systems, services and policies that incorporate a whole family approach, and builds a quality care and education system that begins at birth. As Kathy prepares to retire this year, we along with many others who have worked with her, feel so much appreciation for all the time she has committed over the course of her career to making life better for Maine kids and families, especially in central Maine.
“There is no one in Maine who is more passionate about delivering the highest quality care and education to our youngest children than Kathy Colfer. Her national and state leadership in opening the very first Educare in a rural setting is truly groundbreaking. She is a pioneer in early childhood education and Maine has greatly benefited from her vision and tireless advocacy.” –Laurie Lachance, President of Thomas College and Chairperson of the Educare Central Maine Board.
Kathy Colfer will be awarded the 2018 Director’s Giraffe Award for her dedication and achievement in early care and education on November 15th at the Champions for Children Luncheon.
Don’t forget to join us for the 2018 Champions for Children Luncheon! And keep an eye out for upcoming profiles featuring the rest of our 2018 Giraffe Award winners.