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JuDee Pettijohn Dawkins

JuDee Pettijohn DawkinsJuDee Pettijohn Dawkins began her career with the Department of State as an OPS employee at the Division of Cultural Affairs in 1976, working with the cultural grants program through 1985, serving as Grants Bureau Chief and section head in the latter years. In 1985, she became Assistant Division Director and remained in that administrative role until 1997. 

Following a short period with other state agencies, she returned to the Division of Cultural Affairs as its director in 2001, where she remained until being appointed Deputy Secretary of State overseeing the Divisions of Libraries and Information Services, Historical Resources and Cultural Affairs.

Under her leadership, the Division of Cultural Affairs achieved a number of successes. The grants process was transformed through the consolidation of multiple grant programs into the current model, which includes four major grant programs. She championed the Division’s move to an online grant application and management system, eliminating excess paper applications and the hundreds of physical materials received from applicants and grantees. Dawkins encouraged productive collaborations across Department of State’s Divisions and oversaw the Division’s move to its current home, the historic and beautiful Brokaw-McDougall House in Tallahassee.

Though she received degrees from Ursinus College and Florida State University, Dawkins says that her "real" education came from working at the Department of State and learning as much as possible from staff, as well as from members of the Florida Arts Council, Florida Historical Commission, State Library Council, Florida Folklife Council, Historic Markers Council and other professional boards at the Department of State and Department of Business & Professional Regulation.