Public Education Partners’ (PEP) newly adopted mission statement is to lead our community in acting collectively to support, strengthen and advance public education and student achievement in Greenville County Schools. With this statement in mind, we recently honored several organizations and individuals that harness the power of the collective.
The Partner of the Year Luncheon is an example of PEP’s work to strengthen Greenville’s community through collaboration and partnerships. Since 2010, PEP has honored organizations that prioritize investment in Greenville’s public education system and sector as the Partner of the Year.
“Greenville Partnership for Philanthropy (GPP) is deservedly PEP’s Partner of the Year,” said Ansel Sanders, PEP President and CEO. “Working largely behind the scenes, GPP is a major reason why Greenville can more effectively identify big issues in Greenville and strategically invest in efforts to target such issues. GPP’s approach to collective philanthropic investment catalyzed OnTrack Greenville, an effort to ensure all middle school students at Berea Middle, Tanglewood Middle, Lakeview Middle, and Greenville Early College remain on track for high school graduation. Kids are better off because of OnTrack, and thus kids and our community are better off because of GPP.”
GPP recognizes that philanthropy plays a huge role in the community’s success and thus organizes the funding community to tackle issues in Greenville through a holistic, equitable, and collective approach.
“Public Education Partners is one of the most important institutions in Greenville County working to make our already excellent schools even better, and we are pleased to be recognized as a fellow partner in their work,” said Katy Smith, Staff & Facilitator for GPP. “Our members, who represent philanthropic funders investing in Greenville County, recognize that strong schools lead to strong communities, and one of the best investments we can make is in our students and the people who serve them.”
PEP also recently recognized several fundraisers and philanthropists at the Association of Fundraising Professionals SC Piedmont Chapter’s National Philanthropy Day luncheon.
- Outstanding Corporate Philanthropist: The Capital Corporation
Dan Adams, President and CEO of The Capital Corporation, is committed to philanthropy and encourages his staff to get involved too. For the past three years, a Capital Corporation team has volunteered at PEP’s Make Summer Count family reading nights at Chandler Creek and Taylors Elementary Schools, reading with families and providing much-needed literacy strategies and free books. Mr. Adams has also generously supported the development of EdsourceSC.org.
- Outstanding Family Philanthropist: Nancy and Erwin Maddrey
Nancy and Erwin Maddrey have been great supporters of PEP for many years and have a deep commitment to supporting Greenville County Schools. The Maddreys have served on numerous Boards and have been involved in various civic and community engagements. Because of them, PEP is able to offer “Building STEAM” grants for teachers, providing much-needed resources for teachers to implement innovative, collaborative classroom projects.
- Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser: Susan Shi
Susan Shi has served as a PEP staff member, and is a current Board Member and volunteer. She, along with other Board Members, was instrumental in establishing the Grier Gower Mullins Fund for Quality Teaching, named in honor of PEP’s former Executive Director. This fund supports quality teaching by funding evidence-based, school-wide efforts to increase the likelihood of teachers’ returning to the same teaching site the following year.
- Outstanding Young Philanthropist: Greenville Senior High Academy (GHS) Student Council
GHS raised over $225,000 to fund PEP and the Make Summer Count program. PEP was the beneficiary of GHS Spirit Week and its annual fundraising competition. Spirit Week brings together an entire community, focused around the single goal of helping an organization. It is a group effort, led by the students, and supported by their parents and school staff.
“All of these honorees reflect the way we at PEP do things in Greenville – that you can go farther and faster together,” said Angel Whaley, PEP’s Vice President of Advancement. “They, like all of our donors, are critical stakeholders in the health and prosperity of Greenville’s public education system.”