2000 AALL Awards
Gary Eyre Lifetime Achievement Award
With over 20 years of exemplary administrative experience in Arizona adult education, including 14 years as Deputy Director of Pima County (now College) Adult Education (PCAE), Susana Mincks, has been instrumental in raising the "bar of excellence" in all areas of adult education. Her indomitable spirit has been an inspiration to students, instructors, and co-workers for decades. Susana Mincks' enthusiasm for teaching and learning affects everyone around her. She motivates people to learn. Susana Mincks has utilized her one-two-three punch as an educator, a grant writer, and a community leader to bring many invaluable programs and opportunities to PCAE. In no small part to the leadership efforts of Susana Mincks, Pima County Adult Education was honored by the United States Secretary of Education as one of the ten outstanding adult education programs in the country in 1992 and again in 1999. Susana Mincks has left her mark of excellence in every phase of PCAE.
Not only has Sue aspired to instill a love of learning, fun, and enjoyment into all of those in her sphere, she has personally set the goal of raising the professional status of adult education state and nationwide. Sue has vigorously negotiated throughout the years to hire more and more top quality instructors into benefited positions. Currently, over 60% of PCAE's instructors.enjoy benefited status. The creation of adult education career paths, rather than on-the-side-jobs, has been an important milestone in the advancement of adult education. Among her past duties: President, Mountain Plains Adult Education Association, 1994-95; MPAEA Board Member, 1992-96; MPAEA Conference Chair, 1995; Board Member, Academy for Literacy Resources and Professional Development, 1996- 97; Conference Coordinator, 1987 Arizona Adult Education Conference; AALL Member and previous AALL(AAACCE) Board Member.
Through the years as part of her extensive association with PCAE, AALL, MPAEA and other adult education associations, Susana has presented workshops at numerous conferences. Underlying all her presentations is a theme of enjoying learning and having fun. Sue emphasizes student- centered learning, hands-on educational activities, and lots of motivational games Susana has been honored with many awards recognizing her contributions to both lifelong learning and the promotion of adult education. Among her awards: AALL's Frances E. Blake Adult Learner Advocate Award, 1997: Mountain Plain's Adult Education Association's Award of Commendation,1992; and the Tucson YWCA's Women on the Move Award, 1990.
In both her personal and professional life Susana Mincks has been a leader and a role model in promoting the concept of education as a lifelong process. Susana succeeded because she loved learning. She has always had a strong inner drive to learn throughout her life. After three decades of exemplary service to the adult education community, Susana Mincks is taking her retirement next spring and moving on to new adventures. The legacy of Susana Mincks, however, will remain.
Lifelong Learning Advocate Award - in honor of Francis E. Blake
Cindy Meier is a creative and committed adult educator. Her caring personality, unique talents and outstanding professionalism have been making an impact in the lives of students and the context of colleagues since she began teaching adults over twenty years ago. She has added value to the concept of learning as a lifelong process through diverse and unique contributions. She’s been the catalyst for discoveries that provide depth and growth and new appreciation in the lives of her work colleagues and students. Cindy can make us see the beauty in a poem, the truth in a descriptive phrase, the hidden talents in ourselves, and the possibilities that wait for our attention. She’s done this in a variety of ways - as a teacher, colleague, supervisor, mentor, presenter, conference planner, committee member, actor, writer (articles, books, grants, reports), event organizer and board member.
Cindy’s service to the field has included contributions on the local, state, regional and national levels. In addition to the benefits enjoyed by her local and statewide colleagues as they work with Cindy to reach a common goal, she has provided service by generously sharing, through publications and presentations, her unique perspective
Another area of Cindy’s service to the field involves her truly exceptional talents in creating fun and meaningful events, from a special moment of celebration or appreciation to a full-blown conference, graduation, arts festival, or other large event. Cindy was Chair of the Program Committee for the AAACE/COABE/Arizona Adult Education Conference in 1995 and a Planning Committee Member for the MPAEA regional conference in Las Vegas in the same year, and a Conference Planning Committee Member for the 1999 Arizona Adult Education State Conference.
In the last two years, Cindy has been a very active participant in the critical endeavor of creating a state plan and implementing the changes in adult education mandated by the national Workforce Investment Act. At the same time as she has worked with others to provide leadership for Arizona adult education programs in making this transition, she has provided leadership throughout a critical change period in Pima College Adult Education. On July 1, 2000, PCAE became a part of Pima Community College. Many obstacles were found along the path that merged the two entities, and Cindy’s skills in communicating, organizing, understanding, and mediating played a significant role in this transition.
Cindy has demonstrated professional excellence throughout her career in adult education. Cindy’s involvement is a key factor in the fact that Pima College Adult Education has won the U.S. Secretary of Education’s Award as an Outstanding Adult Education and Literacy Program TWICE within the last nine years. She now writes most of the grants that fund PCAE’s large and diverse program, and she also writes the reports to funders that enhance the status of the program and the potential for continued funding.
Cindy’s professional excellence shines throughout a career that’s included serving as Founder and Artistic Director of a theater company dedicated to the telling of women’s stories (Bloodhut Productions) and expanding the arts-based curriculum at PCAE’s Project for adults with developmental disabilities. Cindy is a woman with great heart, great vision and great compassion, she brings very special gifts to the field of adult education, and these gifts can surely be described as positively impacting and adding value to the concept of lifelong learning.
Gary Tang Memorial Award
Cynthia C. Maxson possesses the qualities of an outstanding teacher; these same qualities make her an exceptional mentor of teachers as well. Cynthia has actively served students and colleagues in the field of adult education since 1979, first in Michigan and then in Arizona. Her experience includes that of Lead Instructor at the Scottsdale Adult Learning center (1984-87), Community College English Instructor, current ABE/ASE instructor at Maricopa Skill Center (MSC), and member of the Curriculum Alignment Team for the State of Arizona Adult Education Standards Project.
Creativity and innovation are Cynthia’s hallmarks. Cynthia was ahead of the game in aligning curricula to the new Adult Education Standards, perhaps because of her extensive experience with the development of Rio Salado’s JCEP Competencies in 1987, but more likely because of her belief in the need for the finest of instruction for all students, especially those most in need. Her efforts continue to entice her co-workers to attain a high level of excellence in their alignment efforts, and Cynthia is always there to respond to requests for guidance and assistance.
Cynthia’s manner is unassuming and her desire is that her colleagues experience the same success she enjoys. Cynthia is a frequent presenter at local, state, and regional conferences. She has represented Rio, MSC, and the State of Arizona in an exemplary manner. Cynthia consistently nominates students to the National Adult Education Honor Society and is never too busy to nurture their growth and development. In addition, Cynthia has spearheaded the annual Statehood Day Celebration at MSC for years, played "Polly Portfolio" in leading the implementation of portfolio assessment, and coordinated field trips for students. Cynthia can be relied upon to do whatever needs to be done to improve the situation.
Cynthia Maxson is a lifelong learner who radiates a love of learning. She demonstrates by example her enthusiasm for learning, whether in parenting her children, participating in her community, or sharing insights within study groups. She somehow transforms what is "tedious" into an enjoyable experience; for example, she found a way to entice her basic math students to ask for drill and practice! Because students see that Cynthia is a lifelong learner AND that she is happy to be so, they are more apt to test the waters themselves.
Cynthia is a dedicated wife and mother, an exceptional teacher, a supportive member of her community, and a leader in the field of Adult Education. In 1985, she was named Outstanding Part-time Faculty by Rio Salado College’s ABE department. This was followed in 1986 with the college’s Instructional Technology and Design Department’s Outstanding Part-time Faculty award. In 1992, Cynthia was named Outstanding Faculty—College-Wide by Rio Salado College, and in 1999 Cynthia was a member of the MSC/Rio Team which won the prestigious Innovation of the Year Award for the Maricopa County Community College District.
Cynthia Maxson teaches from the heart. She is a source of stability and reassurance to students, teachers, and co-workers throughout the state of Arizona. Cynthia is truly deserving of an Arizona Association for Lifelong Learning award.
Rookie of the Year Award
John Hindman has done an amazing job as a Resource Instructor at Pima College Adult Education's Community Class site at Pima County Adult Detention Center. Currently, John works full-time as an ABE/GED Resource Instructor while overseeing the day-to-day activities of all of the services that PCAE offers at the detention center
Since John Hindman has been PCAE's "site coordinator" at the jail, he has greatly expanded programming and services. John took a strong leadership role in obtaining additional funding, programming, and services for his site. John Hindman is a leader. He does not wait for direction; he finds out what needs to be done and does it. In any given day, he is responsible for the operations of three ABE/GED classes, one ESOL class, an official GED exam, Life Skills classes, the Free to Readprogram, a computer lab, a newsletter, the PALS Bridging Program, literacy education, and vocational education. He oversees the work of two ABE/GED instructors, one ESOL instructor, and an instructional assistant. Each and every one of these employees holds John Hindman in high regard.
His judgement, skills, knowledge, and diplomacy are greatly respected. John must balance his duties as an adult educator with the demands of the Corrections Bureau Staff, Pima College Adult Education, and an often needy inmate population. He diplomatically runs educational programs, handles software and hardware problems, works one-on-one with students in all subject areas, and enthusiastically helps other program staff with their daily routines. John handles diverse duties and diverse populations with ease and expertise.
All of John Hindman's initiatives positively impact not only the inmate students, but also Pima College Adult Education, the Sheriff's Department, and the Adult Education Division of the Arizona Department of Education. Moreover, the new programs and positive changes John has implemented are a benefit to the taxpayers of Pima County.
His students have already broken national GED pass rates. Both the number of students and the number of student hours at the jail have increased since John's tenure. John Hindman has raised the standard of adult education in the Pima County Adult Detention Center. The outstanding services he provides are invaluable to Pima College Adult Education, and they are recognized statewide by the Department of Corrections. This year the Pima County Sheriff’s Department nominated John for the Correctional Association’s Teacher of the Year Award (CEAA). He makes all of us in adult education look better and shine brighter.