The Marge Wyatt Advocacy Award will be Given Friday to Local Hero at the 33rd Annual Policymaker Breakfast

Published : Thursday, April 28, 2016 | 7:25 AM

Patricia Huffman. Photo courtesy Options for Learning

Options For Learning hosts the 33rd Annual Policymaker Breakfast at the Altadena Town & Country Club Friday morning to honor Patricia Huffman, a long-time advocate of children and early learning professional, with The Marge Wyatt Advocacy Award for her commitment for children and youth in the San Gabriel Valley.

The Marge Wyatt Advocacy Award, presented by Options for Learning and is sponsored by Pacific Oaks, Rose Hills Memorial Park, ChapCare, Longo Toyota and Thorson Buick, Massage Envy and a media company recognizes community leaders in their commitment to children and youth.

The annual event draws a diverse mix of business leaders, community members and legislators to discuss emergent issues in the field of child development and early learning such as STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) in early childhood which has been an emerging topic over the past few years.

Invited speakers include Mayor Terry Tornek, Senator Carol Liu, Senator Ed Hernandez, Senator Bob Huff, Congresswoman Judy Chu, Congresswoman Grace Napolitano, Assemblymember Ed Chau, Assemblymember Chris Holden, Assemblymember Roger Hernandez, Supervisor Hilda L. Solis and Supervisor Michael Antonovich.

According to Options for Learning, Patricia Huffman, a long-time resident of Claremont and graduate of the University of Redlands and Bishop Johnson College of Nursing at the Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles, is trained as a registered nurse and has worked professionally in programs devoted to children and families.

Huffman also has an extensive background working with high risk infants, maternal-child health, parent-infant groups, in-home intervention, mental health, nutrition and family preservation.

“She is a shining star of selfless dedication, high-quality work, and mentoring of younger professionals. And she has contributed enormously to the success of Options for Learning. She is a model for all of us,” said Cliff Marcussen, Executive Director at Options for Learning.

The event was started 33 years ago by Child Care Information Services (CCIS), a resource & referral agency founded by local child advocate Marge Wyatt.  After merging agencies in 2012, Options for Learning has continued this valuable event and it has become a well-attended annual gathering in the Pasadena area, according to Options for Learning Team Manager Kimberly Dobson Garcia.

Susan Wood, Executive Director at The Children’s Center at Caltech and 2015 Marge Wyatt Advocacy Awardee, will keynote the event with a spotlight on the importance of STEM for young children.

“This event really spotlights the critical importance of educating children ages zero to five,” said Wood.

Attendees can expect a valuable take-away and insightful experience pertaining to pertinent child care topics.

“Sharing news and the status of legislation regularly highlights the ongoing child care needs in the community,” said Garcia.

The 33rd Annual Policymaker Breakfast will take place at the Altadena Town & Country Club at 8 a.m. Friday.

The For tickets and more information, visit www.optionsforlearning.org.

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