We have reached a milestone together, you and me. This is my final Dear Reader column, and the final issue of Exchange magazine that I curated in my role as editor-in-chief. With a heart full of mixed emotions, I resigned from my editorial position—which has truly been a job of a lifetime—this spring, to take a giant flying professional leap and work full-time for a charitable organization I co-founded two years ago.

I meditated, I talked to trusted advisers, and finally I steeled my spine for the chaos of operating without a financial safety net and scaling up a human rights “start-up.” (And by the way, a shout-out here to those of you who have opened family child care programs, founded centers, stepped into director roles, and so on … taking a leap is exhilarating and invigorating, and it is also scary! I am experiencing these mixed emotions firsthand.)

Equally importantly, I prepared to say goodbye to a team, a community, and an organization that have brought me seven of the best years of my professional life. A former middle school teacher and career writer and editor, I was relatively new to the field of early childhood when I was hired to edit Exchange magazine. My beloved mentor and friend, Nancy Rosenow, took me to lunch and pitched me her vision of the magazine’s future—and my potential role therein. Nancy took a chance on me as we ventured into the world of magazine publishing together when Dimensions Educational Research Foundation acquired Exchange Press in 2016.

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I determined I would never give her a reason to doubt her faith in me.

During my time at Exchange Press, I have been honored to work with some of the most incredible writers and thinkers in our field. To each Exchange magazine author I have had the pleasure to communicate with—thank you. I see you. I am grateful for the wisdom and ideas you brought to our readers. The early childhood education field is truly a miraculous group of people doing great work and I am proud of Exchange Press for uplifting the work of professionals by connecting us with diverse ideas, innovative practices, research, and strategies from inspiring practitioners.

As my tenure here comes to an end, a new path begins for Exchange Press. I have loved contributing to the work our small but mighty team has put into creating the all-new online Exchange Content Hub. The magazine and the Hub will now work hand-in-hand as a source of support for the important work you do each day. We can now complement the carefully curated collection of articles in each magazine issue with more timely, responsive, and varied content on the web—more videos, articles of varied lengths, live events, and modes of sharing we have not even thought of yet. And by switching to a membership model with both free and paid levels, accessible from your desktop, tablet, or phone, we can now bring more committed early childhood practitioners like you into a true exchange of ideas on learning and caring for and with young children everywhere.

I will miss you all, and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for Exchange Press.

Sara Gilliam author and former editor of Exchange magazine.

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