Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Communications Office
Governor Fletcher Appoints Members to the State Advisory Panel for Exceptional Children

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, December 20, 2006  
Contact Information:  Jodi Whitaker

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Governor Ernie Fletcher has appointed six members to the State Advisory Panel for Exceptional Children (SAPEC).

Linda M. Alford, of Alexandria, is the assistant superintendent for Campbell County Schools.  Alford received degrees in special education from Georgetown College, Northern Kentucky University and the University of Cincinnati.  She is a member of Phi Delta Kappa and the Council for Exceptional Children.

Dianna L. Howell, of Pikeville, is a treatment counselor for the Pike County Board of Education.  Howell received a degree in psychology and human services from Pikeville College.  She is married to Zach Howell.

Linda K. Farris, of Benton, is a homemaker.  Farris is a member of the Friends of Clarks River National Wildlife Refuge.  She is married to Garlin Farris.

Gloria D. Sharp, of London, is the manager for initiatives and accountability for the Kentucky Education Cabinet.  Sharp received a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Somerset Community College and a master’s degree in career and technical education from Eastern Kentucky University.  She is a registered nurse and taught health and science for 18 years at Laurel County High School.

Anna Winchell, of Vine Grove, is an advocate for special needs children and their families.  Winchell is a member of the Passport Health Plans Quality Member Access Committee, the United Partners in Kentucky, the Kentucky Partnership for Families and Children, the Kentucky Statewide KinCare Steering Committee and the North Hardin High School Site Based Decision Making Council. 

Lynn Diane Gagle, of Lexington, is an instructor at Crawford Middle School and Asbury College.  Gagle received a bachelor’s degree in physical education and health from Asbury College.  She also received a fifth-year certification of education and master’s degree in social work from the University of Kentucky. 

SAPEC provides policy guidance with respect to special education and related services for children with disabilities in Kentucky as defined by special education regulations and applicable state and federal law.  The panel advises and assists the Department of Education regarding the provision of appropriate services for children from birth through 20 years of age.  SAPEC is made up of 21 members appointed by the governor.