Arkansas State CTE Director Named Star of Education, Rising Star by Advance CTE

May 24, 2016 – Washington, D.C. – Advance CTE is thrilled to announce Dr. Charisse Childers, State CTE Director at the Arkansas Department of Career Education (ACE), as the 2016 Star of Education, Rising Star award recipient. This honor is awarded to State CTE Directors who display unequivocal dedication to and engagement with the goals and overall mission of Advance CTE. 
 
“Charisse has been a visionary trailblazer for Arkansas, and has worked tirelessly throughout her career to advance Career Technical Education,” said Kimberly Green, Advance CTE Executive Director. “We are lucky to have her as a passionate and talented leader for CTE in Arkansas, as well as the nation.”  
 
Childers has made remarkable gains since she took on the position in January 2015. In her first year at ACE, she quickly established herself as a champion for the cause, providing resources and information to Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson and Senator Jane English (R) as they worked to pass ACT 892, which better aligns workforce development programs with the skills needed by employers in the state. In addition to working hard on legislative priorities that impact CTE in the state, Childers directs the vision and work of almost 600 employees; engages a 21-member industry-led board; and oversees workforce training grants, adult education and rehabilitation services in the state of Arkansas. 
 
“I am honored to have been selected by the Advance CTE Board of Directors for this national award,” said Dr. Childers. “I look forward to continuing to represent Advance CTE, my state and our governor, Asa Hutchinson, the Arkansas Department of Career Education, and CTE leaders as we demonstrate the importance and exemplary work in career and technical education.”
 
Previous to serving in her role as State CTE Director, Childers spent eight and one-half years as the executive director of Accelerate Arkansas, an organization dedicated to building Arkansas’ knowledge-based economy. She also worked in the K-12 space as a CTE educator for six years, and then as the director of the College Now Program where she developed and administered a college and technical preparatory program consortium for 20 secondary schools.  
 
Childers will be honored during an awards ceremony at the 2016 Advance CTE Spring Meeting in Washington, D.C. on May 24, 2016.
 
Contact: Katie Fitzgerald, 301-588-9630, kfitzgerald@careertech.org 
 
Advance CTE: State Leaders Connecting Learning to Work is the longest-standing national non-profit that represents State Directors and state leaders responsible for secondary, postsecondary and adult Career Technical Education (CTE) across all 50 states and U.S. territories. Established in 1920, Advance CTE supports visionary state leadership, cultivates best practices and speaks with a collective voice on national policy to promote academic and technical excellence that ensures a career-ready workforce.