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Meridian native named Parent of the Year

By By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
May 23, 2002
Dr. Curressia Brown of Itta Bena said part of the reason she was named Mississippi's 2002 Parent of the Year has to do with the example her own parents set.
Brown, an assistant professor of business and social science at Mississippi Valley State University, is the daughter of Ruby and Curby McFarland of Meridian.
The Parent of the Year program, established by the Mississippi Legislature, recognizes outstanding parents based on nominations sent to the Mississippi Department of Education from public school districts.
Brown said she considers the honor a challenge to become more involved in the lives of children and her community.
Brown and her husband, Troy, a former Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate, have three children: Troy Jr., 12; Brandice Andea, 8; and Solomon Khari, 3. She is active in her children's education and participates in the Leflore County Public School District's PTA.
The Browns recently coordinated the Delta Book Project, with a goal of collecting and distributing 51,000 books to more than 600 classrooms in 15 Delta counties.
A 1984 graduate of Meridian High School, Brown often reflects on her upbringing here.
Brown still exercises her civic pride today as a member of Rotary International. She is a member of Providence Missionary Baptist Church, where she is minister of music and teaches Sunday school.
She also hosts a radio talk show on WGRM, devoting much of her air time to education advocacy.
In a recent program Brown said: "Respect is the key to our success. As parents we must respect our teachers and school officials and teach our children to do the same. Teachers must respect our children all of them regardless of who their parents are or how high their grades. Children must be taught to respect those in authority over them. Once this foundation is established, we will find that the proverbial cracks' that our children are falling through will be sealed."

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