Dr. Aguilar-Lawlor awarded AAGT Gifted Education Leadership of the Year Award
The first female and first Latina to ever hold the superintendent post at the Cartwright Elementary School District has won the 2020 AAGT Gifted Education Leadership of the Year Award.
Dr. LeeAnn Aguilar-Lawlor was nominated by Cartwright’s Gifted Team and teacher Dylan Wegela and she was chosen as the winner out of all of the statewide nominees.
“I am honored, very proud and appreciate the award,” said Dr. Aguilar-Lawlor after she received the news. “I am humbled by it, and I accept it on behalf of a supportive Governing Board who allows us to prioritize gifted education and the amazing gifted teachers at the district and schools who make the magic happen for our gifted learners, #oneteamunafamilia!”
“One Team, Una Familia!” is not just Dr. Aguilar-Lawlor’s motto. It’s also the mantra she uses to drive the district toward excellence while still being able to honor the diversity that makes Cartwright a wonderful place to learn and work each day.
Dr. Aguilar-Lawlor is an advocate for nearly 1,000 identified gifted students in the Title I District and she ensures that the Gifted Department receives funding in order for the five-member team to continue their innovative vision of excellence for students.
Funding allows the department the ability to offer a tuition-free gifted summer camp, site-based Gifted Enrichment Club programs, gifted professional development for teachers to earn their state gifted endorsements, monthly Parent “Cafecitos” (coffee talks) for gifted parents to come together as a community, and five gifted specialists who work directly with students and teachers to meet the needs of a diverse gifted population.
The individuals who nominated her wrote: Dr. Aguilar-Lawlor is not only able to perform her job duties at an exemplary level, she has an extraordinary ability to provide individual support and service to her staff, students, and families within the Cartwright District. She has an innate ability to discern quickly individual needs and moves efficiently to provide key information, recommendations, or direction. Her co-workers describe Dr. Aguilar-Lawlor as a “go-to” person who continues her open-door policy in her role as district leader. She continuously looks for ways to be present on school campuses and make meaningful differences to ensure staff are having their professional and personal needs met while simultaneously safeguarding the high-quality instruction the district prides itself on.
The AAGT Gifted Education Leadership of the Year Award will be presented to Dr. Aguilar-Lawlor on February 6th at the AAGT Conference at 2:30 p.m. at the Black Canyon Conference Center in Phoenix.