Retired teacher receives award

Mattie Collins

The Arkansas Community Foundation board of directors presented Mattie P. Collins of Pine Bluff with the 2020 Lugean L. Chilcote Award.

The honor is awarded for outstanding service to philanthropy and community. Collins received the award at the Nov. 19 meeting of the board, according to a news release.

"This prestigious award named for a former board member is not given every year, and the last time was 2017," said Heather Larkin, president and chief executive officer of the community foundation.

"Mattie exemplifies the spirit of the award through her lifetime of service in Pine Bluff and throughout our state. She is a champion of education and opportunity for all," Larkin said.

A Pine Bluff native, Collins is a retired teacher with 39 years of experience at Pine Bluff and Gould. She is the president and founder of the Ivy Center for Education, a nonprofit college readiness and youth mentoring program in Jefferson County.

She graduated from Arkansas AM&N College (now the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff) with a bachelor of arts degree in history and political science. She earned a master of arts degree in educational administration at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.

Collins and her husband, Kenneth, have two children and seven grandchildren.

Among her many awards, Collins received the 2020 Educational Achievement Award; 2019 Alpha Kappa Alpha Golden Soror of the Year/South Central Region and other AKA awards; American Red Cross Hero Award; NAACP Dove Civil Rights Award; Kappa Alpha Psi Outstanding Community Service Award; Omega Psi Phi Citizen of the Year Award; UAPB Chancellor's Benefit for the Arts Outstanding Educator Award; Joseph B. Whitehead Educator of Distinction Award; Arkansas Education Association Human Rights Special Achievement Award; and the Pine Bluff Festival Association Service Award, according to the release.

A member of Barraque Street Baptist Church, she is also a life member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

"With many instances of board service throughout her career, she currently serves as advisor to YAC (Youth Advisory Council) of the Pine Bluff Area Community Foundation; Closing the Achievement Gap state commissioner; Ivy Center for Education ACT Boot Camp; Partners: Go Forward Pine Bluff; and the UAPB STEM Academy and IT Department," according to the release.

The Arkansas Community Foundation offers tools to help Arkansans protect, grow and direct their charitable dollars as they learn more about community needs.