The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has selected University of Arkansas at Little Rock alumnus Ernest Garrett III to head the Missouri School for the Deaf.
When Garrett assumes his duties on July 1, he will become the first deaf superintendent of the school since its establishment by the Missouri Legislature in 1851.
Garrett, currently serving as executive director of the Missouri Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, received an Associate of Arts degree and dual Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in 2003.
He earned a Master of Science degree and a Master of Social Work degree, with a school social work specialization, from Gallaudet University. He is pursuing a research doctorate in management, with a specialization in leadership and organizational change, from Walden University.
A native of St. Louis, Garrett is immediate past president of the National Black Deaf Advocates Inc., which gave him the 2009 Advocate of the Year Award.
Garrett is also recipient of the 2011 Lasting Impression Award from Special School District of St. Louis County.
He is a member of the Relay Missouri Advisory Committee, Missouri Newborn Hearing Screening Standing Committee, Missouri Department of Mental Health Deaf Advisory Council, and Missouri Deaf-Blind Technical Assistance Project Advisory Committee.
Garrett is also a board member of the National Association of State Agencies for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Inc., and he is an advisory board member for the Described and Captioned Media Program, funded by the U.S. Department of Education and administered by the National Association of the Deaf.
In addition, he is a member of the National Association of Social Workers, School Social Work Association of America, Academy of Management, and the Society for the Advancement of Management.