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CEC Announces Three New Board Members

Headshots of Ben Hicks, Laural Jackson, and Charmion Rush

Arlington, Va. ― The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) is pleased to announce the election of three new board members, Ben Hicks, Laural Jackson, and Charmion Rush. These new members will provide strategic direction for continued growth around CEC's mission of improving the success of children and youth with disabilities and/or gifts and talents.

"We are extremely grateful to welcome our new board members,” said Chad Rummel, CEC Executive Director. “Each one provides our board with a unique background and perspective and we look forward to their expertise and guidance.”

Ben Hicks is Director of Special Education for the Charlevoix-Emmet Intermediate School District in Charlevoix, Michigan. Ben began his career as a resource room teacher and, while teaching, pursued a Master’s degree in special education and an Education Specialist degree in special education administration. Today, he provides oversight of special education programming at all levels, coordination of services with local districts, general supervision system development and monitoring, MTSS coordination, and collaboration with many local agencies.

Laural Jackson is a federal programs coordinator in Delta Junction, Alaska. She has more than 20 years of experience as a district-level administrator and is a career special educator—including teaching, administration, and higher education. As a 2019-2021 board member, she has held a variety of leadership roles and has been active in both CEC and the Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE), as well as many other non-profit community organizations. Laural recently returned to the special education classroom after retirement to fill a vacancy due to her area's teacher shortage.

Dr. Charmion Rush is an associate professor of Inclusive and Special Education at Western Carolina University (WCU). Former leadership positions include serving on the most recent CEC Board of Directors as well as with many of CEC's Special Interest Divisions. Charmion's teaching focuses on preparing educators to teach diverse populations and her areas of research and scholarship include culturally relevant pedagogy, disproportionate representation, implicit bias, inclusion, and literacy practices. She is also principal investigator of the North Carolina State Improvement Project (NCSIP) and program director for the Call Me Mister program at WCU.

About Us 

The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) is the leading association of educators dedicated to advancing the success of children and youth with exceptionalities through advocacy, standards, and professional development. 

Posted:  3 November, 2021

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