Partners in Education to honor Barksdales

By The Associated Press

JACKSON — Claiborne and Jim Barksdale will be honored in September with the 2012 Winter-Reed Partnership Award for their work on education in Mississippi.

The award will be presented by the Mississippi Association of Partners in Education during a dinner on Sept. 10 at the Jackson Convention Center.

The brothers established the Barksdale Reading Institute in Oxford with the Mississippi Department of Education and have donated money to help with other scholarships for college students.

Jim Barksdale provided $100 million to the state to establish the institute in 2000. Jim Barksdale, the former CEO of Netscape, is the interim executive director of the Mississippi Development Authority.

Claiborne Barksdale serves as the chief executive officer of the institute and is chairman of the Parents’ Campaign, a public education advocate program.

In addition to helping students, the institute also promotes the training of school principals and other administrators.

Another goal is to increase the Teach for America numbers from about 550 currently to about 1,000.

The Barksdales have also contributed to the Mississippi Building Blocks program, which is now in its fourth year of working toward improving early childhood education.

The MAPE launched the Winter-Reed award in 2007 to honor former Gov. William Winter and Tupelo businessman Jack Reed Sr. for their lifelong contributions to public education.

The award now annually recognizes those in the state that have also contributed to education.

Click here for 3Qs with Jim Barksdale from today’s NEMS Daily Journal.

Click video to hear audio