Joan Akin, principal of Lawrenceville Middle School in Lawrenceville, attributes her decision to become an educator to her first class of sixth graders. "They taught me that teaching is more than delivering content. Middle school children have a thirst to learn, to be accepted, to be guided, and to be trusted," she says. Her initial encounter with that class of sixth graders convinced her that by choosing education as her profession, she would have "ongoing opportunities to make a real difference in young lives." In that early classroom, Mrs. Akin also discovered her "love for learning and her love for learners." As principal of Lawrenceville Middle School, Mrs. Akin has cultivated a climate of "warmth and security" at her school. In 1991 Lawrenceville Middle School Award form the International Alliance for Invitational Education. This honor was soon to be followed by a Georgia School of Excellence distinction in 1993. Academic excellence, together with an ethic of tolerance and mutual respect, represents the fundamental principles of Mrs. Akin's leadership as an educator.
1966 Mercer University, B.A.