FHSA State Leadership Awards

State award recipients compete for Region and National Awards. RIVHSA and NHSA winners are denoted with a * beside their name. 

2019 Award Recipients 

Parent of the Year – Maritza Vasquez* from Orange County Head Start, Orlando
Beating the Odds – Sharlene Singleton* from Episcopal Children’s Services, Jacksonville
Teacher of the Year – Jennine Nolan from Hillsborough County Head Start/Early Head Start, Tampa
Staff of the Year – Indra Font from Polk County Public Schools Head Start, Lakeland
Support Staff of the Year – Parameshwari “Rani” Panchanathan from Miami- Dade Community Action and Human Services Department, Head Start/Early Head Start*, Miami
Corporate Award – Smart City*, Orlando
Scholarship for Head Start/Early Head Start Staff, Higher Education – Princess Ortiz from Orange County Head Start, Orlando

The National Head Start Award State Finalists:

Aubrey Puckett Memorial Award – Sonya L. Hill from Orange County Head Start, Orlando
Edward Zigler Innovation Award – Orange County Head Start*, Orlando
Vanessa Rich Leadership Award – Autumn Tomas from Episcopal Children’s Services, Jacksonville
Ron Herndon Head Start Parent Scholarship – Lara Urdaneta* from Orange County Head Start, Orlando 


2018 Award Recipients

Parent of the Year - Ikeshia Highsmith, Hillsborough County Head Start, Tampa *
Father of the Year - Daniel Grant, Community Coordinated Care for Children, Inc., Orlando *
Administrator of the Year - LaTanya Wynn-Hall, Lutheran Services of Florida, Jacksonville
Teacher of the Year - Loren Herndon, Hillsborough County Public School Head Start, Tampa *
Staff of the Year - Tabatha Hayes, Lutheran Services of Florida, Jacksonville
Support Staff of the Year - Matthew Fullas, Community Coordinated Care for Children, Inc. Orlando *
Oral Health Award - Brevard Public Schools Head Start Program


Dannery Ramon Scholarship for Head Start/Early Head Start Alumni, High School Senior - Orange County Head Start

Cynthia Marshall Scholarship for Head Start/Early Head Start Staff, Higher Education Lutheran Services of Florida- Largo

The National Head Start Award State Finalists:

Brevard Schools Head Start NHSA Edward Zigler Innovation Award
Deborah Jones NHSA Aubrey Puckett Memorial Award Community Coordinated Care for Children, Inc., Orlando


2017 Award Recipients 

Parent of the Year - Katoya Finney-Miller, Lutheran Services of Florida, Palm Beach
Father of the Year - Curtis Click, Lutheran Services Florida, Palm Beach
Beating the Odds - Shanika Preston, Community Coordinated Care for Children, Inc., Orlando
Teacher of the Year - Chantelle Brown, Lutheran Services of Florida, Palm Beach
Staff of the Year - Catherine Penton-Gooch, Lutheran Services of Florida, Jacksonville
Support Staff of the Year - Teresita Boneo-Maligsa, Lutheran Services of Florida, Palm Beach
Humanitarian of the Year - Capurnia Larkins
Oral Health Award - Brevard Public Schools Head Start Program
Corporate Award - Children's Services Council, Palm Beach County