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Each member of the council is appointed by the Mississippi governor, who is committed to identifying state leaders in early childhood, from providers to agency heads.

To ensure an equitable distribution of SECAC members across the field of early childhood, the legislature passed specific membership requirements in Senate Bill No. 2395. This bill requires the governor to appoint the following members to the SECAC:

  • A representative of the Mississippi Department of Human Services;
  • A representative of the Mississippi Department of Education;
  • A representative of local educational agencies;
  • A representative of Mississippi Institutions of Higher Education;
  • A representative of local providers of early childhood education and care services from each congressional district;
  • A representative from Head Start agencies located in the state, including Indian Head Start programs and migrant and seasonal Head Start programs as available;
  • The state director of Head Start Collaboration;
  • The Part C Coordinator and/or the Section 619 Coordinator of programs under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 USC 1419, 1431 et seq.);
  • A representative of the Mississippi State Department of Health;
  • A representative of the Mississippi Department of Mental Health; and
  • Representatives of other entities deemed relevant by the governor.

Current Members (2018-2019)

Member Name Title Agency/Organization
Ms. Takisha Bishop Director God’s Helping Hand
Ms. Paula Broome Special Assistant Attorney General Office of the Attorney General
Ms. Margaret Chapman Director Agape Education Center
Ms. Melissa Parker Director of Office of Licensure Mississippi Department of Health
Ms. Margarette Davenport Center Director Clay Co. Day Care
Justice Jess Dickinson Executive Director Division of Family and Children’s Services
Mr. John Davis Executive Director Mississippi Department of Human Services
Mr. Drew Snyder Executive Director Division of Medicaid
Ms. Savannah Fountain Director Caterpillar Development Center
Mr. Johnny Franklin Member Mississippi Board of Education, Mississippi Charter Authorizing Board
Dr. Brittany Herrington Early Learning and Significant Cognitive Disabilities Specialist REACH-MS University of Southern Mississippi
Ms. April May Director Early Childhood Academy
Ms. Eloise McClinton Executive Director ICS Head Start
Ms. Jennifer McNeal Director / Teacher HOB Child Development Center
Ms. Lora Mederos Executive Director Hancock Co. Human R&R Agency
Ms. Diana Mikula  Executive Director Mississippi Department of Mental Health
Dr. Mimmo Parisi Professor and Director National Strategic Planning and Analysis Research Center
Dr. Robin Parker District Director. Interim Assistant CTE Dean Hinds Community College, Integrated Pathways
Ms. Sandra Parks Director Mississippi Department of Mental Health/Division of Children & Youth Services
Ms. Tina Routh Director of Early Childhood Education Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians (HS/EHS)
Ms. Tabitha Scoggins Director Children’s Workshop
Dr. Laurie Smith Education Policy Advisor /
Executive Director of SECAC
Office of the Governor
Ms. Holly Spivey Director Mississippi Head Start Collaboration Office, Office of the Governor
Ms. Nita Norphlet-Thompson Executive Director Mississippi Head Start Association
Ms. Carolyn Willis Associate Vice President Delta Health Alliance
Dr. Carey Wright State Superintendent Mississippi Department of Education
Dr. Andrea Mayfield Executive Director Mississippi Community College Board