Career Educator Named "Woman of the Year

Friday, July 27, 2018


Career Educator Debra Maxi is Dr. Weber's "Woman of the Year"

Assemblymember Shirley Weber has named Career Educator Debra Maxie her "Woman of the Year"

Assemblymember Shirley Weber has named long-time educator and retired Crawford High School Vice Principal Debra Maxi her 2018 Woman of the Year. 

Maxie is a graduate of Lincoln University of Missouri where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Health and Physical Education, a minor in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling.  She earned her Administrative Credential from San Diego State University.  

Debra began her teaching career in 1973 in the Chicago Public School system teaching physical education before moving into the field of counseling.  In 1979, Mrs. Maxie relocated to San Diego and joined the teaching force of the San Diego Unified School District. 

After teaching in various elementary and middle schools as a PE teacher and swimming instructor, Debra accepted a position at one of California’s most diverse inner city high schools in 1991. For 20 years, Debra was one of the campus site counselors before being promoted to the position of Vice Principal in 2012.  During her tenure yet beyond her assigned responsibilities, she served as senior class advisor, evening program counselor for credit recovery for 15 years and summer school counselor for 12 years.  Although assisting all the students at the school, her passion has always leaned towards the success of African / African American students. 

“I made it my lifelong passion to assist others get an education in whatever field they desire," Maxi said. "I trust that the commitment, dedication and love I have given to the students and families I had the pleasure of working with, has made a difference in their lives.  It is said that we all serve a purpose…I guess this has been mine!”

In 2006 Debra founded a club on campus designed to recapture, encourage and enlighten students who had been ‘written off’, titled The Diamonds in the Rough. This club allowed her to step outside her role as academic counselor and work with some of the most academic and behavior challenged students. Debra placed the students in activities on and off campus, around the city of San Diego, the across the state and even South Africa! Debra had a fulfilling career in the field of education that spanned 44 years including working every summer. Mrs. Maxie retired in June of 2017.

When she is not working Debra enjoys working 1000 piece jigsaw puzzles, reading, swimming, traveling and making cultural dolls which she calls ‘Recycled with Flair. Debra is an active member of Association of African American Educators, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., the National Sorority of Phi Delta Kappa, Inc. and the Black Women’s Institute for Leadership and Development.  She currently serves as a member on the California Student Aid Commission.

Debra is married to husband Leo. Combined they have 7 adult children and 6 grandchildren. She travels between Chicago and San Diego allowing her to spend time with all her children and grandchildren.