Representatives Barbara McLachlan and Jim Wilson honored with the 2019 CASB Legislative Excellence Award


Susan Meek
Director of Strategic Engagement and Communications
[email protected]


December 13, 2019

Representatives Barbara McLachlan and Jim Wilson honored with the 2019 CASB Legislative Excellence Award

DENVER — The Colorado Association of School Boards (CASB) honored Representatives Barbara McLachlan and Jim Wilson at its annual awards luncheon on Friday, December 6, where more than 500 education leaders gathered to celebrate excellence in public education. Each year CASB selects lawmakers to honor with the Legislative Excellence Award to recognize their extraordinary work on behalf of children.

Both Barbara McLachlan and Jim Wilson have had long and distinguished careers as educators before they were elected to the Colorado House of Representatives. Their insights from many years of working with students afford them insights that other lawmakers do not necessarily have. Representatives McLachlan and Wilson have been able to use their experiences in the classroom to help craft policy that has helped each and every Colorado student. This can be best highlighted by their work to help ensure every Colorado child has access to full-day kindergarten.

The award was presented by Matt Cook, CASB Director of Public Policy and Advocacy, and Kevin Patterson, Chief Executive Officer of Connect for Health Colorado, who is also a former CASB Board Director and Denver Public Schools board member. “The passage of House Bill 1262 was a long time coming,” said Cook. “In fact, I distinctly remember being in this very room when newly elected Representative Jim Wilson said he was going to carry a bill to fund full-day kindergarten — that was almost 8 years ago. Representative Wilson’s commitment to our youngest students has never wavered over all of that time. The combination of Representatives Wilson and McLachlan proved to be the right team to push this vision across the finish line.”

Representative McLachlan was instrumental in gaining support for the bill as she lead countless conversations about the importance of ensuring access to full-day kindergarten. Cook explained, “McLachlan’s leadership as Chair of the House Education Committee was key to the success of the bill. I do not think it is a stretch to say that without her leadership the bill may not have passed. CASB is truly blessed to have such great advocates for our students representing us under the gold dome.” 

The Awards Luncheon was held during CASB’s annual Convention last week. More than 1,100 school board members, superintendents, and education leaders from across Colorado gathered in Colorado Springs for professional development and networking. CASB is the only statewide organization that advocates for school board leadership in Colorado. It works to promote the interests and welfare of Colorado’s 178 school districts. CASB uses its expertise and collective state presence to provide cost-effective services and information to enable locally elected boards of education to operate efficiently and effectively in an increasingly complex and resource-challenged environment. 

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CASB is a Colorado nonprofit organization whose members consist of local boards of education throughout Colorado and whose mission is to advance excellence in public education through effective leadership by locally elected boards of education. CASB represents and advocates for more than 1,000 school board members and superintendents statewide.

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