Rachel Spates has been in education since graduating from The University of Georgia in 1992. A special education teacher by trade, Rachel began her career in the Fulton County School system, where she received the Most Promising New Teacher Award in 1993. In 1996, Rachel received a Master’s degree from Georgia State University and moved to Gwinnett County, where she taught for four years. Rachel moved to Coweta County in 2001 and accepted a position in the Coweta County School system as an inclusion coordinator. In that role, Rachel partnered with Emory University to train and support teachers and administrators in best practices for inclusive settings. She then moved to the Special Education office in Coweta as a consultant over elementary, preschool and autism programs in 2002. Rachel came to work for West Georgia RESA in 2005, after finishing her Educational Specialist degree from Samford University. At West Georgia RESA, Rachel has held the positions of GLRS Director, Assistant Director, Associate Director and Executive Director. Rachel is currently the President of the RESA State Network.