Magee gets $5,000 award from foundation

Published 1:33 pm Tuesday, September 8, 2020

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The Northshore Community Foundation is proud to announce that the recipient of the Third Annual Dick Knight Award is Ola Magee, program director of the Regina Coeli Child Development Center (RCCDC).

The award is given annually in honor of the late Richard F. “Dick” Knight, a founding and beloved board member known for his authenticity and commitment to service, said Susan Bonnett Bourgeois, CEO of the Foundation.

“We honor Dick’s legacy by recognizing the life-long service that Ola has given to Head Start and the children and families of her community,” Bourgeois said. “Her dedication and philanthropic heart are the embodiment of the spirit in which Dick lived his life.”

Having started as a volunteer at a Head Start facility in Franklinton in 1971, Magee was soon hired and her true passion for caring for others began to shine. While she and her husband were raising four children of their own, Magee took night classes at Southeastern Louisiana University to get her teaching certificate, and later earned a B.S. in Education while rising through the organization with a reputation as a loving and devoted teacher, employee and leader.

“Ola has a gift for teaching in a way that is best for each individual child,” said Dr. Susan Spring, executive director of the RCCDC, which provides comprehensive early childhood services to over 1,800 children and employs over 500 people in a five-parish area of Southeast Louisiana. “She has helped to open 19 new Head Start centers and has taught countless teachers across the state to be a compassionate and caring educator. In my opinion, Ola Magee is the epitome of service to the community, just like Dick Knight, and her accomplishments reflect this. She truly lives and works to do ‘What’s Best for Children,’ the core of the RCCDC motto.”

Magee received $5,000 as recognition of her selfless contribution to the nonprofit sector. The Foundation would like to thank Resource Bank, the Gia Maione Prima Foundation and the Fund for Bogalusa for the contributions to making this year’s award possible. To learn more about the award, visit online at

The Dick Knight Award recognizes individuals for their commitment and service to the charitable, nonprofit sector in the four-parish Northshore region. The spirit of the award is to recognize nonprofit staff who have significant tenure in service-based work and have a body of accomplishments that reflect that success. Previous winners include Diane Baham of STARC and Myrna Jordan of Our Daily Bread Food Bank.