Tuesday, July 24, 2018

The Faces Behind AEA Purchasing

Sure, you may recognize our logo and definitely know our name (we hope), but do you know the faces behind our contracts, discounts and savings? AEA Purchasing is comprised of a handful of folks doing great work everyday to help educators, administrators and other non-profit groups across the state achieve more by spending less.

Here's who you've got on your team!

Barb Adams
Administrative Assistant, Food Program
Office Location: Cedar Falls

New to the AEA Purchasing in 2018, Barb assists the day to day operations, facilitating the partnership between awarded vendors, manufacturer representatives and members of our food program.  Barb enjoys outdoor activities, from local festivities in the Waterloo area to traveling adventures with her husband.  She loves meeting new people and trying new things.

Megan Brink, RD, LD
Consultant, Food Program
Office Location: Elkader

Meg joined the AEA Purchasing team in the spring of 2016.  She serves as the food program consultant for child nutrition program operators across the great state of Iowa.  Her office is located at Keystone AEA in Elkader.  Outside of work, she enjoys any outdoor activities, especially gardening and canoeing the Turkey River!

Jerry Cochrane
Purchasing Coordinator, Non-Food Programs
Office Location: Cedar Rapids

Jerry has been with AEA Purchasing since it was created in 2002, moving to a part-time position in 2017. He works primarily in the technology and library areas, but also facilitates the twice-a-year paper bid. His office is located at Grant Wood AEA in Cedar Rapids. Outside of work Jerry enjoys biking, kayaking, pickleball, reading and travel.

Dan Dreyer
Director, Food Program
Office Location: Cedar Falls

Dan brings over 35 years of experience in the school foodservice arena and has spent the last 19 of those years working to bring new and innovative products to school kitchens as well as delivering the best possible price on products and services from vendors. Hanging his hat in Cedar Falls (Central Rivers AEA), when not at work, Dan enjoys walking, going to movies and watching his 8 grandkids grow.

Laurie Hoing, CPPB
Purchasing Coordinator, Non-Food Programs
Office Location: Johnston

Laurie joined AEA Purchasing in 2015 and brought with her 14+ years of public procurement experience. She handles all technology related procurement activities and contracts. Living in Des Moines (Heartland AEA) with her husband, she has 2 grown children, 2 grandchildren and enjoys traveling and spending time with family and friends. 

Joni Puffett
Purchasing Coordinator, Non-Food Programs
Office Location: Delhi

For 10 years, Joni has played an active role in agency marketing as well as managing a variety of contracts and vendor/customer relations. Residing on a dairy farm in Delaware County (Keystone AEA), she enjoys spending her free time reading, jogging and breathing in the country air with her husband and two young kids. 

Monday, July 23, 2018

5 Surefire Ways to Engage Adolescents in Reading

Engage your middle grade readers with these tips from Mackin!

"5 Surefire Ways to Engage Adolescents in Reading"
Dr. Jennifer McCarty Plucker, Mackin Director of Professional Learning

1. Flood your classroom with books they will want to read.
2. Coach students to discover what they like and can read with ease.
3. Make reading a social activity.
4. Build student self-efficacy.
5. Celebrate!

Click here to visit Mackin and download the complete article.

Mackin is a long-time valued partner with AEA Purchasing. For contract and discount details, visit their profile page on our website.