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Julia Fallon
Executive Director
[email protected] 


Press Release: SETDA Honors Dr. Sydnee Dickson, Utah State Superintendent of Public Instruction with 2021 State Policy Maker of the Year Award 


November 9, 2021 (Washington D.C.) – SETDA, the principal membership association of U.S. state and territorial educational technology leaders, announced at their Leadership Summit named Dr. Sydnee Dickson as the 2021 recipient of the SETDA State Policy Maker of the Year Award. Dr. Dickson accepted the award at the (virtual) 2021 SETDA Leadership Summit: Envisioning a New Era of State Leadership.

Annually, SETDA honors elected and appointed policymakers at both the state and federal levels who have championed access to and effective use of technology in K-12 education. The award is rooted in SETDA’s long tradition of seeking out exemplary leadership. It honors a recognized policymaker who actively supports digital learning opportunities for all students and engages with the broader education and policymaking communities to advocate for the role of technology in advancing education.

Dr. Sydnee Dickson has served as the Utah State Superintendent of Public Instruction since June 2016 and served as interim state superintendent for six months prior to that. 

She has nearly 10 years of experience working in the office of the Utah State Board of Education (USBE)

She holds an Ed.D. degree in Education Leadership and Policy from the University of Utah and a master of education degree from Brigham Young University in educational leadership and administration. Her bachelor’s degree in elementary education and teaching is from Utah State University.

In her nomination, her colleagues shared, “Dr. Sydnee Dickson is truly an exemplary leader of technology in education and exemplifies the best of how to effectively lead change. She continues to lead, guide, and share her vision of the positive impact technology can have to improve teaching and learning. She is the ultimate advocate for the equity of access to home technology connections including digital tools and resources. For these and many, many more reasons, we nominate Dr. Sydnee Dickson for SETDA’s State Policymaker of the Year.”

Julia Fallon, SETDA’s Executive Director, “Dr. Dickson provides an exemplary model of effective state leadership, turning vision into action by surrounding herself with dedicated and experienced staff to support Utah schools in both rural and urban districts across the state. Her leadership to quickly meet the needs of the K-12 school system related to technology resources to provide blended and digital learning became even more important in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic has made a long-term difference for students in Utah and serves as a model for schools around the nation.”


The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) is the principal association representing U.S. state and territorial educational technology and digital learning leaders. Through a broad array of programs and advocacy, SETDA builds member capacity and engages partners to empower the education community in leveraging technology for learning, teaching, and school operations.

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