Debra Lawrence, Ph.D, Keynote Speaker
Debra L. Lawrence has over 35-years experience in the field of early care and education. She has presented workshops and seminars at the international, national, state and local levels. Her service to the profession includes leadership positions involving a four-year term on the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s governing board and continuing to serve the organization through the Board Alumni committee. Prior to moving to Pennsylvania, Debra served as President of the Colorado Association for the Education of Young Children and Co-Chair of the Governor’s School Readiness Commission.
Debra is a trauma informed certified trainer, she reviews higher education teacher certification programs through the Pennsylvania Department of Education and is a certified play coach. She was the Director of the Southeast Regional Key located in Philadelphia which is the hub of operations for Pennsylvania’s Quality Rating and Improvement System, Keystone STARS.
Currently, Debra is the secretary of the IPA/USA Board and serves as a faculty member in teacher preparation programs at Delaware County Community College. She is the author of "How Public Investment Contributes to High Quality Early Childhood Programs: Lessons from Pennsylvania" and is a contributing author to Learning from Head Start.
Her research interests include curriculum and environments that strengthen the dispositions of learning, play as the foundation of all curriculum, and creating stable and supportive environments that foster children’s ability to reach their potential.