Meghan Collins, originally of Metairie, Louisiana, is the Director of Communications at the Florida Department of Education (DOE) and serves on the Volunteer Florida Commission as the designee of the Commissioner of Education. Her public service experience spans nearly a decade, and she has specialized in strategic communications for public agencies in Florida and Louisiana.

In Louisiana, Collins served as press secretary for the Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH), where she developed strategies to communicate the department’s efforts to mitigate significant budget shortfalls and protect critical health care services for needy families. While at DHH, she also played a critical role in the agency’s response to state and national emergencies, including the H1N1 crisis, the BP oil spill and Hurricane Isaac.

In Florida, Collins served as communications director for the Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) and DOE. At DJJ, Collins developed and deployed strategic initiatives to promote the Department’s system overhaul, which focused on reforms to divert at-risk youth from entering the state’s juvenile justice system. These reforms included the civil citation program, which has been lauded by editorial boards across Florida for reducing youth arrests.

In her current position at DOE, Collins is committed to the Department’s mission of ensuring every Florida student has access to a world-class education that will prepare them to achieve their academic, personal and career goals. She oversees the Office of Communications and External Affairs, where she drives coverage for department successes, including record-high graduation rates, narrowed achievement gaps and overall improved student performance; develops and implements crisis communications strategies; and leads efforts to strengthen public support of effective education policies.

Collins received her Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. She resides in Tallahassee, Florida, with her husband, Frank, who also serves in state government, their son, IV, and daughter, Arden, as well as their two rescue dogs.