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The Board of Directors of Childcare Network of Evanston (CNE), an Evanston-based non-profit supporting quality early childhood education and child care, has announced the retirement of Executive Director Martha Arntson, effective June 30, 2012.

Since 2001, Martha Arntson has served as executive director of CNE with a focus and a passion for providing all children and families with access to quality care and early education. Prior to her hiring at CNE, Ms. Arntson worked as a pre-school teacher and then as executive director at School for Little Children for 26 years. Over the past 11 years, she has directed the expansion of CNE’s programs and services and has been a strong advocate for local and state support of early education. She was instrumental in garnering $1.7 million in federal stimulus money to expand Early Head Start (EHS) into neighboring communities and to create a new home-visiting option to serve the increasing number of parents who are out of work. The CNE and EHS staff has doubled under Ms. Arntson’s leadership, and the organization moved into new office space in 2011.

“The Evanston community has been fortunate to have a leader like Martha, who has worked tirelessly for so many years, to not only ensure that every child has what they need to succeed in school, but also to make sure people understand the importance of high quality early education,” said CNE Board President Deb Danson. “CNE’s Board of Directors has appointed a search committee in hopes of finding a new director who shares Martha’s commitment to making a difference in the lives of our community’s youngest citizens.”