The Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) awarded Roberta M. Marcus, Master School Board Director, with the second Timothy M. Allwein Advocacy Award at the PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference in Hershey, Oct. 17.
The award was established in 2011 by PSBA in honor of Tim Allwein, the association’s former assistant executive director for Governmental and Member Relations who passed away unexpectedly. It is presented annually to an individual school director or entire school board to recognize outstanding leadership in legislative advocacy efforts on behalf of public education and students that are consistent with the positions in PSBA’s Legislative Platform.
Roberta Marcus was selected to receive the award as a result of her many volunteer hours devoted to raising awareness of key legislative issues on the local, state and federal levels. Her command and knowledge of these issues was described as “prolific.” Marcus’ ability to articulate them to stakeholders of diverse backgrounds makes her a “strong and effective advocate.”
In her many roles, Marcus has served as PSBA president in 2010. She has been elected president of the Parkland SD School Board for three terms and vice president for two terms. She has served as the Lehigh County Legislative Coordinator and has testified before the Pennsylvania House Education Committee on Accountability Block Grants and cyber charter schools. She also was among the inaugural group of individuals to receive the prestigious PSBA Master School Board Member accreditation in 2008.
Marcus and future recipients of the award are selected with the following criteria and considering the diverse activities that may be included within each area:
* Impact on legislation or legislators — Actions that have an effect on advancing public education consistent with PSBA policies, generating support and/or raising new awareness among legislators.
* Mobilizing grassroots advocacy — Actions that mobilize legislative advocacy by fellow board members and/or members of the community.
* Raising public awareness — Actions generating support for and raising awareness among the state policymakers, media and the general public regarding a specific legislative issue or issues.
Nominations were considered by the Advocacy Award Selection Committee, which is appointed by the current PSBA president each January. The committee consisted of no more than seven members, and members were selected from various school boards and PSBA regions throughout the state. No PSBA staff served on the committee or had any participation or influence on any decision made by the committee.
The PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference is the joint annual conference of the Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators and the Pennsylvania School Boards Association.
PSBA is a nonprofit statewide association of public school boards, pledged to the highest ideals of local lay leadership for the public schools of the commonwealth. Founded in 1895, PSBA was the first school boards association established in the United States.