Council Members

The South Carolina Early Childhood Advisory Council serves the state as required by the Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act of 2007. Representatives of specific state agencies and stakeholder groups are required to be present on the Council. The Council made up of representatives from state agencies responsible for child care, SC Department of Education, local providers of early education services, Head Start agencies and the state director of the Head Start Collaboration and Children’s Trust of South Carolina. The state director of South Carolina First Steps shall coordinate the activities of the Council. 

Members of the South Carolina Early Childhood Advisory Council

Chair, Governor’s Designee:
David Morley

Vice Chair:
Shelley Canright, Ph.D., Early Childhood Educator


  • Representative Rita Allison, SC House of Representatives, House Education and Public Works Committee Chair
  • Representative Jerry N. Govan, SC House of Representatives
  • Senator Greg Hembree, SC Senate, Senate Education Committee Chair
  • Senator Gerald Malloy, SC Senate

Agency Directors:

  • Mary Lynne Diggs, SC Head Start Collaboration Office, Director
  • Michelle Gough Fry, JD, PhD, LLM, SC Department of Disabilities and Special Needs, Director
  • Robert Kerr, SC Department of Health and Human Services, Director
  • Michael Leach, SC Department of Social Services, Director
  • David Mathis, Ed.D., SC Department of Education, Deputy Superintendent - Superintendent’s Designee
  • Edward Simmer, M.D., SC Department of Health and Environmental Control
  • Sue Williams, Children’s Trust of SC, Chief Executive Officer


  • Walter Fleming Jr., Business Community
  • John Hayes, M.Ed., Child Care Educator
  • Timothy Holt, Business Community
  • Jesica Mackey, Parent of a Young Child
  • Jennifer McConnell, Child Care Provider
  • Janie Neeley, Parent of a Young Child
  • Alexia Newman, Medical/Child Care Development Provider
  • Roger Pryor Jr., Child Care Provider
  • Amy Williams, DNP, Medical Provider
  • Nicole Wynkoop, Parent of a Young Child


Early Childhood Advisory Council Member Agencies

Early Childhood Advisory Council Meetings

Please click here for a list of meeting dates.

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