Our staff works hard to provide support
and help to the members of the Global Achievers family. Click on
a name below to learn more about them. To send us an email
use the link above (Reach
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or click here.
- Executive Director
- Associate Director
- Executive Director
Bette Hickman is an art teacher and entrepreneur
with a love of children. She has been the
driving force behind Global Achievers since it
was created in 1994. Through her vision,
creativity, and leadership, the program has
grown from an idea discussed at a
business/education conference in Washington,
D.C., to an organization that today involves
students of all ages -- from elementary school
through college -- in ten countries.
As Executive Director of Global Achievers, she is responsible
for the day-to-day operation. She works at home and abroad to
identify and match schools, develop policy and guidelines, and
handle the myriad issues involved in an international education
project. She also serves as an important resource for teachers
and student companies, helping them solve problems that develop
as they communicate and trade. The cultural and educational
exchange trips that often result from the program are frequently
facilitated, organized, and hosted by Mrs. Hickman.
A proponent of economic education, she speaks frequently on the
topic using the Global Achievers model. Mrs. Hickman has been a
featured speaker at seven international educational conferences
in Europe and the United Kingdom. In July, 2001, she addressed
the Fourth International Conference on Entrepreneurship and
Citizenship in the 21st Century, which was attended
by representatives of eleven countries. In July 2003, she spoke
at the IACSEE conference at Egmond aan zee in the Netherlands.
Mrs. Hickman worked with the Coweta County, Georgia, School
System for seven years. Drawing on her creativity, genuine
interest in people, and experience as a small business owner,
she served as an effective liaison between the schools and the
community. As creator and Director of the
Business/Education/Community Partnership Program, she developed
a strong program that benefited both students and businesses.
She also developed the school system’s first mentor program. The
framework she built in the early 1990s continues today to
enhance the lives of students and community members through
one-on-one mentoring relationships.
A skilled artist who studied Art Education at Florida
International University and Miami-Dade Community College, Mrs.
Hickman established an art school through the Coweta County
Recreation Department and for the past 23 years has taught art
to hundreds of children ages 5 through 17. She was owner of The
Cricket’s House, an artist co-op featuring the work of twelve
artists in different mediums and the creator of "Bette’s
Balloon: Special Art for Kids of All Ages," a line of painting
and drawing focused on childhood and family. Most recently, she
illustrated "Once There Was An Acorn," a story written and
published by John Hickman, her husband.
Mrs. Hickman is an active community leader, involved with the
Salvation Army, Civitan Club, and United Way. In the spring of
2003, she was named as a "Gracious Lady of Georgia" at a
ceremony in Columbus, Georgia.
Geraldine Welch - Associate Director
Geraldine Welch is a teacher with an unquenchable thirst to
experience, understand and share the world with students. She
has been with the Achievers program since its inception.
In 1995, Welch, media specialist from Evans Middle School, was
one of a team of four teachers from Coweta County to write a
grant and receive funding from the federally-funded Next
Generation School Project. The technology-based grant enabled
Evans Middle School to have classroom computers networked
through a fiber optic link to three other schools within the
Coweta County School system, paving the way for Evans to become
one of the six pilot schools for the Achievers program. Students
at Evans were linked with students at Grange Academy in
Kilmarnock, Scotland - a partnership that continues today.
Mrs. Welch is a 31-year veteran of the Coweta County, Georgia,
school system, where she served as an English teacher and as a
media specialist. She holds a B.S. degree in English from
Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama, and a
Master's in Education from Auburn University. Upon her
retirement in June, 2000, she joined Global Achievers full-time.
Her responsibilities include training, coaching and supporting
teachers throughout the school year as they institute and
customize the Global Achievers program to their classrooms. She
also helps to facilitate cultural and educational exchanges at
home and abroad for teachers, students and community leaders.
Her background as a media specialist was instrumental in the
development and updating of the Global Achievers' web site.
Welch is a member of the International Association for
Children's Social and Economics Education, an organization
focusing on how children learn and are taught about society and
economics. In July, 2001, and also in July 2003, she and
Executive Director Bette Hickman spoke on Global Achievers at
the Association's biennial international conferences in England
and in the Netherlands. She has also served on the Education
Committee of the Newnan/Coweta Chamber of Commerce.
An avid traveler, Mrs. Welch travels abroad several times a
year. She has been on six Achievers study tours, has friends
throughout the world, and regularly opens her home to