The Denver Preschool Program photography exhibit, "The Power of Preschool," offers a glimpse into the life of a preschool child through the lens of five local, award-winning photographers. The temporary exhibit will be displayed at Denver International Airport from December 2013 through February 2014 on the northwest side of Level 5 in Jeppesen Terminal, near baggage carousels 19-17.
"This exhibit of 30 photographs offers a compelling visual story of why preschool is so important to a child's future," explains Jennifer Landrum, President and CEO of the Denver Preschool Program, a sales tax-funded initiative that promotes access to high quality preschool. "These talented photographers capture how preschool lays the academic foundation for language arts, math and science while nurturing social skills and emotional literacy."
The exhibit underscores Denver's leadership in a growing trend of large cities providing access to preschool independent of state and federal initiatives. Last month U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) and U.S. Rep. George Miller (D-CA) introduced legislation to expand early childhood education based on President Obama's proposal announced in his 2013 State of the Union address.
Presented in English with Spanish translation available, the exhibit was made possible through the generous support of the Mile High United Way.
Photographers Donated Time and Talent
The award-winning photographers who generously donated their time and talent and the preschools where they took photographs are:
- Kevin Hartfield, Family Flex Early Education Center;
- John Leyba, Escuela Tlatelolco Circulo Montessori;
- Carol MacKay, Temple Emanuel Early Childhood Center;
- Heather Smith, Goldrick Elementary School, Denver Public Schools; and,
- Sheba Wheeler, King Baptist Child Development.
Kevin Hartfield, a CBS4 photojournalist and producer for nearly 30 years, earned an Emmy for Best Kids Program as Director of Photography for a nationally syndicated kids program called "News for Kids," where he introduced an 'MTV style' of shooting and editing. He later moved to sports where he became a producer, shooting and developing college coaches' shows.
John Leyba, Colorado native and 29-year-veteran of the Denver Post, has earned recognition from the Colorado Press Association and the Colorado Associated Press, including the 2010 Best of Show News Photo Award. Leyba's work also includes collaborating with National Geographic photographer Jay Dickman, and teaching photography to a 4th-grade summer class from Horizons, a non-profit program designed to enrich the lives of low-income Denver Public Schools children.
Carol MacKay, a former chemistry teacher, rediscovered her passion for photography after the murder of her daughter. Currently a staff photographer for Kent Denver School, MacKay brings a depth of experience in capturing classroom and school events. "As a teacher I strove to help students realize their full potential, and trying to find the moment that captures what is in a person's heart is not very different."
Heather M. Smith began taking photos as a hobby and a way to strengthen her memory skills after a childhood brain injury. Through photography she has explored her deep interest in all kinds of subjects from architecture to children. She regularly hosts interns and conducts free photography workshops in her community. Smith also volunteers for the Association for Community Living in Boulder, the Mile High Business Alliance, Buckley Air Force Base, Share Our Strength Cooking Matters, and the No Kid Hungry national campaign
Sheba Wheeler, a former Denver Post reporter, thrives even when faced with the unexpected. A tragic death in 2005 sparked her passion for photography. As the lead shutterbug at Picture Your World Photography, Wheeler has published work for the Denver Post and the Wall Street Journal Online. She blends 15 years of journalistic experience as a lifestyles reporter with contemporary portraiture to fetch unique shots and preserve the magic of the moment.
About the Denver Preschool Program
The Denver Preschool Program provides preschool tuition support to all Denver families with 4-year-olds. A 12-cent sales tax on $100 purchase funds the city program that Denver voters approved in 2006. For more information, visit dpp.org.