Let’s take a moment to highlight Donna Davis, our Senior Community Engagement Manager in Arizona. Donna has been working with Expect More Arizona for nine years, and has played an integral role in building relationships in both urban and rural communities throughout the state.
Her passion for education comes from an economic development perspective. Having two of her own children move out of state for jobs, Donna understands the need of ensuring that Arizona not only attracts good business, but also produces a prepared workforce. Throughout her career she has first hand seen the impact education has at communities at every level.
Her greatest passion is education in rural communities. Working closely with rural communities, Donna has come to experience firsthand how different the needs of rural Arizona are compared to the urban area. Her hope is that lawmakers and citizens keep that in mind when it comes to policies.
“I want every student in our state to be ready to go on past high school, find their passion and bring that passion back to their Arizona town wherever that is! However, I like to say, we can have the best teachers, students and parents but without good public policy, we won’t go far.”
Here are 10 fun facts to help you get to know Donna Davis:
- Grew up in rural upstate New York surrounded by dairy farms.
- Chased someone through a wheat field to get money out of them when fundraising for the Future Farmers of America in Arizona for three years.
- Spent 23 years traveling the world as a military spouse and arrived in Phoenix in 1990 from Yemen.
- Obtained a health education degree but was unable to teach because frequent moves meant different certification requirements.
- Studied Arabic with her husband for 47 LONG weeks which taught her to talk about weapons and troop strength, but not to buy an apple. However, she did land a job at the US Department of State.
- Had three kids in five years and moved seven times in the first 14 years of motherhood.
- Was one of the first contract employees with Expect More Arizona in 2010 and covered the entire state doing outreach.
- Has six grandkids now whom she loves to spoil.
- Ran her first half marathon in 2009 and hasn’t stopped since, having completed 14 half marathons, 15 triathlons, and 8 Pat’s Runs.
- Never wants to retire!
At Expect More Arizona, our relationships with partners in communities throughout the state are essential to ensuring the diverse needs and voices within education are represented in our work. Our Community Engagement Managers play a critical role in building those relationships by serving as the primary representative of Expect More Arizona in all corners of Arizona.
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