Former Mississippi First Lady Deborah Bryant receives Winter-Reed Partnership Award

February 17, 2022

The Mississippi Association of Partners in Education (MAPE) has awarded former First Lady of Mississippi Deborah Bryant with the 2021 Winter-Reed Partnership Award. The event to honor Bryant was held virtually on February 16, 2022.

The event featured Walt Grayson in conversation with Bryant. She discussed her impact on education as well as anecdotes from her visits to all of Mississippi’s 82 counties as part of her “Read Across Mississippi Tour” while her husband, Phil Bryant, was Governor.

The Winter-Reed Partnership Award is a special honor presented to Mississippians who are devoted to improving public education. Launched by MAPE in 2007, the award is designed to honor the unique bipartisan partnership forged by Governor William Winter and the late Tupelo businessman Jack Reed Sr.

David Schommer is with Jackson Public Schools and is the current President of MAPE. In his words, “Deborah Bryant has worked tirelessly to improve the quality of life for all Mississippians. For her efforts to promote literacy and bring attention to reading disabilities, Deborah Bryant is definitely worthy of this recognition as she sets an example for others to follow. She understands the importance of reaching out to make a positive impact on our state and puts her words into action.”

To learn more about MAPE and the Winter-Reed Partnership Award and view the February 16th virtual ceremony, visit