Company Name: The Jack & Jill Center
Industry: Early Learning Center
HQ: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Boss: Heather Siskind, CEO
How This Boss Makes an Impact for Children in Florida
The Jack & Jill Children’s Center dedicates itself to breaking the cycle of poverty for children of high need working families through quality early childhood education and family strengthening programs.
Watch an interview with Heather Siskind on NBC6 here!
Bringing more than 21 years of experience in early childhood education to Jack & Jill Center, Heather Siskind is a proven leader in education. As CEO, Heather is poised to successfully lead the organization, the longest-running nonprofit provider of early childhood education in Broward County, into the future.
Growing up with limited means in Illinois, Heather became passionate about early childhood education at a young age. For many years after school, she would volunteer at the childcare center she attended as a little girl.
Today, as CEO of Jack & Jill Center, Heather is responsible for setting the strategic direction of the Center; providing a safe, healthy, and enriching learning environment; providing leadership for the staff; developing and managing financial resources; and maintaining healthy relationships with the Center’s board, parents, community leaders and others in the early childhood community.
Under Heather’s leadership since 2014, Jack & Jill Center has expanded its program to include a new elementary school, the Madelaine Halmos Academy, serving students in kindergarten through 5th grade.
Prior to that time, Heather was the director of Dependent Care Services with Baptist Health South Florida, responsible for the oversight of four early learning centers, encompassing 70 employees and 300 children. Before that, she was director of Baptist Hospital & South Miami Hospital Early Learning Centers.
Her prior employment includes serving as associate director of United Way of Miami-Dade’s Center for Excellence in Early Education, director of Early Childhood Programs at YWCA of Greater Miami-Dade, Inc., director of Miami-Dade College’s Wolfson Campus Child Development Center and North Campus Center for Early Care and Education, and several other positions in the early childhood education field.
Heather is Past President for the Florida Association for the Education of Young Children and currently sits on its board. She is a member of the Commonwealth Institute, a women’s leadership group, where Jack & Jill Center was honored as one of the Top Women-Led Businesses in Florida in 2020. She was featured on the 2004 January/February cover of Exchange Magazine, a publication supporting early childhood education professionals.
Heather is passionate about helping women achieve their full potential and has coached many women to attain their higher educational goals and obtain employment. She is committed to educational and race equity issues, and that all children should have a high-quality early education.
She holds both a Master of Science and Bachelor of Science in social work from Florida International University in Miami, Florida. She earned two associate degrees from Miami Dade College in Miami.
Married with three children, Heather currently resides in Plantation, Florida with her rescue dogs and cats. She is a passionate reader, certified yoga instructor, art enthusiast, gardener and animal lover. She enjoys doing 5Ks and 10Ks with friends and family.
About Jack & Jill Center
Jack & Jill Center’s mission is to strengthen children and families through innovative education, supportive programming, and community engagement. It achieves its mission by focusing on both the children and family units as a whole, so that the entire household, children and parents alike, are able to reach their full potential. For over 79 years, Jack & Jill Center has served more than 20,000 children and families in South Florida. It currently serves as a NAEYC-accredited year-round early learning program for children aged 6 weeks though preschool, as well as an elementary school ? with a brand-new elementary facility, The Madelaine Halmos Academy, housing kindergarten through fifth grade unveiled in spring 2021. For more information about Jack & Jill visit www.jackandjillcenter.org.