ECOEA ...the link between your local and the Ohio Education Association
As one of our 8,000 members of a local association within the six counties served by ECOEA (Carroll, Columbiana, Holmes, Stark, Tuscarawas or Wayne), you are automatically a member of the East Central OEA District. We provide professional development, conferences, and scholarships that are open to all members.


The ECOEA Representative Assembly was held in the library of North Canton Hoover High School on Saturday, April 30, 2022. There were 28 delegates in attendance representing 12 local associations and retirees, as well as OEA officers and guests from around the state. President Julie Nelson, North Canton EA, led the delegates through a busy agenda that included candidate speeches for statewide offices seeking endorsement, awards and scholarships, and election of several ECOEA positions. Congratulations to the following members elected to ECOEA positions:
  • Stark County Rep #1-April Chenault-McLeod, Canton Professional EA
  • Stark County Rep #2-Yvonne Parks, Canton Professional EA
  • Stark County Rep #4-Denise Meredith, Fairless EA
  • OEA Board of Directors representing ECOEA Unit-3-Michelle Martin Jones, Canton Professional EA
Vacancies have been declared in unfilled positions for Tuscarawas County Rep and ECOEA Rep to the OEA Professional Efficacy Committee.
ECOEA endorsed candidates for statewide positions:
  • Scott DiMauro, Worthington EA-OEA President
  • Jeff Wensing, Parma EA-OEA Vice President
  • Dr. Deborah Jackson, Princeton Classroom TA-OEA Board of Directors At Large
  • Denise Meredith, Fairless EA-OEA Board of Directors ESP At Large
  • Sharron Callahan, Cardinal EA-NEA Director #3
  • Carol Correthers, Lorain EA-NEA Director #4
These positions will be elected at the OEA Representative Assembly. Good luck to all the candidates!
Delegates heard from STRS Board members Rob McFee and Jeff Rhodes in the STRS Update. Both spoke to the much-improved condition of STRS due to the changes implemented since 2012. STRS has gone from being 58% fully-funded to 88% with a goal of 100% in the next ten years which assures members that their pension fund will be there for them when they retire and for their lifetime.
The OEA officers each addressed the assembly along with committee reports and a delegate briefing by senior Board of Directors member Dr. Geneva Parker. The NEA Directors report was given by former ECOEA President Angela Stewart, NEA Director #4, now from Reynoldsburg EA and Dwayne Marshall, NEA Director #1 from Gahanna-Jefferson EA. Outgoing OEA Retired Board of Directors member Carol Kinsey was honored for her years of service on the ECOEA Executive Committee. Delegates will attend the OEA Representative Assembly in person or virtually on Saturday, May 7.
Congratulations to our two Leaders of Distinction, Dr. Geneva Parker, Canton Professional Educators' Association, and Cindy Endres, retired, from Jackson Classified Personnel Association. These ECOEA leaders received the highest member recognition awarded by ECOEA-The Leader of Distinction award. Both were recognized at the ECOEA Spring Representative Assembly for outstanding service and leadership to ECOEA.
ECOEA was proud to welcome to the ECOEA Spring Representative Assembly Officer LaMar Sharpe of the Canton Police Department. Officer Sharpe was awarded the OEA Human and Civil Rights Charles A. Glatt Award for his commitment to the youth of the Canton community and schools. Officer Sharpe has founded the Be a Better Me Foundation that offers mentoring to the young men and women of Canton. Congratulations to Officer Sharpe for this honor!
Officer Sharpe was recognized by OEA Vice President Jeff Wensing and OEA Secretary-Treasurer Mark Hill at the ECOEA Spring RA.
ECOEA President Julie Nelson presented Officer Sharpe with a donation to the Be A Better Me Foundation in honor of his Glatt award.
Delegates and guests from the Canton Professional Educators' Association joined in celebrating Officer Sharpe's award. Officer Sharpe's nomination was brought forward to OEA by the ECOEA Social Justice Committee and the ECOEA Executive Committee. Officer Sharpe is a positive influence on the students in the Canton City Schools in his role as Community Policing officer. Officer Sharpe's Facebook page has over 92,000 followers where he connects with the Canton community and beyond with positive messaging and recognizing community members who are working to improve the lives of children.
Receiving $500 Internal Organizing Grants from ECOEA this spring were four local associations who brought ideas to engage their members. Receiving the grants were:
  • Chippewa Education Association, President Carolyn Garbinsky, New Year New Opportunities
  • East Holmes Teachers' Association, Grant writer Kari Kaufman, President Megan Mullet-East Holmes Fun Night
  • Jackson Classified Personnel Association-President Brooke Harter, End of Year Meet and Greet Review
  • Rittman Education Association-Co-Presidents Jennifer Dziczkowski and Alicia Mayfield, Pick Me Up Snack
In order to be able to apply for grants, the local association must elect and send delegates to the ECOEA Representative Assemblies in the previous year. Have a project you'd like to fund for your local? Be sure to participate in the governance of ECOEA. Elect and send delegates next fall!
Accepting their checks and certificates from Heather Zuniga, Malvern EA, Scholarships, Awards, and Grants Chairperson, are (left) Angel McCune for Jackson Classified Personnel Association, and (right) Caryn Rubio, East Holmes Teachers' Association.
Congratulations to our three local associations that had winning proposals to promote their association in their community. Each association received $500 for their ideas.
  • Chippewa Education Association, President Carolyn Garbinsky, Avoid Summer Slide-Books for Kids
  • East Holmes Teachers' Association, Grant writer Kari Kaufman, President Megan Mullet-Hospital Goody Bags
  • Jackson Classified Personnel Association, President Brooke Harter, Eggciting Egg Hunt!

When a need in the Jackson Township community was identified, President Brooke Harter and her members "hopped" right on it! The local applied for a $500 PR Grant to purchase plastic eggs and candy to fill over 9,000 eggs for the annual Easter Egg Hunt at the Community Park. Member Jen Harmon from Sauder Elementary even stepped up to be the Easter Bunny for the event! What an "Eggciting" way to serve the community, JCPA!
ECOEA annually gives over $3,500 to locals for public relations projects. We'd love to see YOUR local out in the community! Be sure to elect and send delegates next fall to make your local eligible for grants.
Each spring, ECOEA awards one $500 scholarship to a member, and a $1,500 scholarship to a child of a member who is studying to become a teacher. The Quinn scholarships are given in memory of William and Dolores Quinn, the first Executive Director and Secretary of ECOEA. We are happy to announce this year's winners which were drawn by lottery from all qualified applicants.
The member scholarship was presented to Tiffany Shaw, member from Tuscarawas Valley Teachers' Association by ECOEA Recording Secretary Juliann Doerschuk, Alliance EA. The student scholarship goes to Madison Foutz, daughter of member Christine Foutz, from the Minerva Local Education Association. Maddie is a sophomore at Kent State University seeking a degree in Middle Child Education. Maddie was presented her scholarship by ECOEA Vice President Julie Holderbaum, also of Minerva Local EA. We look forward to having Maddie join us as a colleague in the near future. Congratulations to both our winners who were present at the ECOEA Spring Representative Assembly to receive their awards!

We encourage members to attend the OEA Summer Leadership Academy, June 15-17, which will be held in-person at the Sheraton Columbus Hotel at Capitol Square with over 30 different sessions to choose from.
Click here to go to the OEA website for more information and registration link.
from Kathleen Purdy, OEA-R Rep to ECOEA

May 17, 2022-OEA-R Spring Conference, Dover, OH
June 4, 2022-OEA 175th Anniversary Celebration-Columbus

Become a Pre-retired member at any time in your career. There is a new payment plan to make it easy, too! Click HERE for the application and information.
JULY 14, 2022
ECOEA will be hosting the OEA President and the Treasurer Trainings on Thursday, July 14, in Silk Auditorium at Stark State College, 6200 Frank Rd. NW, North Canton. A full day of association leadership is being planned including internet security, elections training, sessions for both novice and experienced treasurers, and local presidents' training. The training will be held in-person as part of our Summer Leadership series with a continental breakfast and lunch provided. Register at the button below. We hope to see ALL our Local Leaders there!


Are your student loans keeping you down?
Your Association may be able to help you.
 In addition to the date for student loan payments to resume being pushed back SIX times since March 2020, last fall the US Dep’t of Ed announced major reform to the Public Service Student Loan Forgiveness Program and provided new hope and faster relief for over 550,000 borrowers! 
However, borrowers must act before Oct. 31, 2022!
Join us on ZOOM on any of these dates and times to learn more about student loan forgiveness options and the NEA Student Loan Forgiveness Navigation Tool.
  • May 12    5:00 – 6:00 EASTERN TIME
  • May 16   4:30 – 5:30 EASTERN TIME
  • May 18  7:00 A.M. EASTERN and a repeat session at 7:00 A.M. CENTRAL
  • May 23  5:00 – 6:00 EASTERN TIME
The above hyperlink will work for any/all dates and times!
If prompted, meeting ID is 826 7190 6540 and the passcode is 316266.
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The winner for the $10,000 prize will be randomly selected in October. No obligation, click here to enter:
The East Central Ohio Education Association officers and staff:
Julie Nelson, North Canton EA, President
Julie Holderbaum, Minerva Local EA, Vice President
Juliann Doerschuk, Alliance EA, Recording Secretary
Valerie Heban, OEA-Retired, retired, North Canton EA

Phone: (330) 499-8587
Office: 129 Easton St. NE, Suite 103, Canton, OH 44721
Per ECOEA Policy 3.6 Access to Financial Reports-the monthly Executive Committee financial report is available to any member upon request.

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