Champions director “consistent” leader

Nakia and her students learning while having fun.

Nakia and her students learning while having fun.

When it came time to nominate a site director for the annual Champions Quality Achievement Awards, Jennifer Grandberry, an area manager in Ohio, knew exactly who to nominate: Nakia Johnson.

Nakia, the site manager at the Rushwood Elementary Champions program in Sagamore Hills, is known for her consistency and leadership skills. She began her career with Champions in 2006 as an assistant director and quickly became the obvious choice for the site director role.

“Other staff emulate her,” said Jennifer, who has noticed some of Nakia’s favorite phrases work their way into the common lingo at other sites through the years. “Parents love her and how consistent she is. Children listen to her.”

For her part, Nakia said she knew within the first two weeks of accepting the job with Champions that she’d made the right decision because she was having fun and learning new things along with her students.

Jennifer explained Nakia lives the Champions service values every day: from working with her students to set up a warm and welcoming learning environment that makes one forget they’re in a gym, to personally speaking with each of her 35 families before the Thanksgiving holiday to double-check their schedules. Additionally, Nakia built a strong relationship with the staff at Rushwood Elementary to the point where school staff are now advocates of the Champions program because of Nakia’s cooperation.

Champions_Quality Achievement Award logo“I think quality is asking ‘What’s your day-to-day vision?’” Nakia explained. “We have to grow and we have to have positive change.”

Through it all Nakia makes sure to remind her students to take a moment to celebrate their successes.

“She’s embraced the idea of being a teacher,” Jennifer explained. “She makes every moment a teaching moment. Every opportunity she can she’s trying to sneak in some learning.”

Congratulations Nakia!

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