Vickie Gibson Brown of Brent, Alabama, who grew up at Union Grove, received the Dr. Rufus C. Partlow award at the Alabama Civitan Central District convention.
The award was established in memory of Dr. Rufus Partlow of Tuscaloosa, Alabama who was a pioneer in service to individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. He served as Superintendent of Partlow State School from 1944-1966 and was a member of the Civitan Club. The award is given to individuals who have made a significant impact and contributions to serving individuals with disabilities over an extended period of time.
Brown retired in 2014 with a forty year career in education. She began her teaching career at Partlow State School in 1974 and was later Director of the Child Development Center in St. Clair County and Principal of Eden School , special education teacher and later Special Education Coordinator in Bibb County Schools for twenty seven years and ended her career as Director of Student Services in Tuscaloosa City Schools. During her long career, Brown won numerous awards for her work with individuals with disabilities including the Council for Exceptional Children 2004 Special Education Coordinator of the Year and Spirit of Special Olympics award for her long time involvement with the Special Olympic program.
In 1996, she was selected as a Community Hero torchbearer for her community service and ran the torch in Birmingham leading up to the 1996 Olympic games in Atlanta. She also received the Volunteer of the Year Award from the ARC of Tuscaloosa in 2014 and 2019 for her work with the Sounds of Joy.
In 2018 she received the University of Alabama James McLean Excellence in Education Alumni of the Year Award from the University of Alabama.
Vickie grew up in Union Grove, Alabama and is the daughter of the late Gene and Evelene Gibson. She graduated from Arab High School in 1970.