Twenty-three senior-level public education leaders from across the U.S. make up the second cohort of the Fellowship for Public Education Leadership. Starting in June, the Fellows will gather four times over 10 months for weeklong modules at Yale SOM designed to expose them to leading management research and skills that can be applied to the public school systems in which they work. The program also places an emphasis on peer-to-peer learning within the cohort and with leading practitioners in the field. Fellows leverage these learnings as they drive transformative work happening in urban school districts, charter networks, and state education agencies that advances equity and excellence for all students.
Jorge A. Aguilar
Superintendent, Sacramento City Unified School District, California
Superintendent Jorge A. Aguilar leads Sacramento City Unified School District’s more than 40,000 students and 75 schools. He brings more than 20 years of K-12 and higher education experience with a strong focus and background on issues of equity, continuous improvement, and student achievement. Prior to arriving in Sacramento, Aguilar served as associate superintendent for equity and access, Fresno Unified School District, California. He began his career in education as a high school teacher in Los Angeles Unified School District.
Regional Schools Officer, Mastery Charter Schools, Pennsylvania
Ashley Baldwin is a regional schools officer at Mastery Charter Schools, one of the largest turnaround charter networks in the nation serving 14,000 students, and manages about a third of the network’s K-12 schools across Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Camden, New Jersey. Baldwin has a strong track record of success evidenced in her creation of codified network approaches to leader coaching and development and execution of an inclusive multi-year K-12 Math curriculum adoption in her prior role as deputy chief academic officer of STEM, resulting in double digit gains on Math Pennsylvania state and MAP assessments. She is a fierce warrior for educational justice and as a network leader, has advanced initiatives to strengthen culturally responsive teaching practices and disrupt disproportionality in areas such as student suspension rates and the hiring, retention and promotion of leaders of color.
Chief Academic Officer, Tennessee Department of Education
Lisa Coons began her career as a high school English teacher in rural, southwest Ohio. As she watched her students leave her classroom, she realized that she wanted to make a greater impact on the educational system. In pursuit of this vision, she completed multiple advanced degrees and held several school and district leadership roles. Using her experiences and her education, she has continued to focus on educational system improvements as the chief academic officer for the Tennessee Department of Education. She believes that the strongest education system provides all students, no matter where they live or the composition of their family, equitable learning experiences that prepare them for the career goal of their choice.
Superintendent of Schools, Edgewood Independent School District, Texas
Dr. Eduardo Hernández, superintendent of Edgewood ISD, believes student success and access to high-quality education, should not be dictated by zip code. With a strong focus on literacy, developing schools of innovation and improving student achievement, Dr. Hernández has created innovation zones in EISD with learning pipelines that begin in early childhood, continue to high school, and support the goal of the district in graduating all students college-, career-, and military-ready per their expected date of graduation.
Chief Talent Officer & IT Director, LEARN Charter School Network, Illinois
Sabrina King joined LEARN Charter School Network as chief talent officer after a long career in financial services to pursue her passion to reimagine the work experience of public school educators. Coming from a family where all the women except her have been top-tier public school educators, King is a firm believer that great teachers are essential to public education’s strengths in transforming student lives and creating more equitable long-term economic empowerment for those of lower financial means. King is currently leading LEARN’s investments in building expanded pipelines for educator talent and providing more substantive support for educators’ mental health and wellness.
David K. Moore
Superintendent, Indian River County School District, Florida
Dr. David K. Moore currently serves as the superintendent for the school district of Indian River County. Prior to initiating his work in Indian River County, Dr. Moore served as the assistant superintendent for the division of academic support for six years for Miami-Dade County Public Schools. Dr. Moore is known as an innovative systems thinker and demonstrates a strong track record of leading and accomplishing school turnaround in diverse educational settings.
Chief of Staff, Virginia Department of Education
Dicky Shanor is the chief of staff at the Virginia Department of Education. Prior to that, he served for seven years as chief of staff at the Wyoming Department of Education. Shanor has his J.D. from the University of Wyoming College of Law and his B.A. in political science from Yale University, where he played four years of varsity football.
Chief Executive Officer, Democracy Prep Public Schools, New York
Natasha Trivers is the chief executive officer of the multi-state, high-performing charter school network Democracy Prep Public Schools. As CEO, she oversees the network’s schools in New York, Nevada, Texas, and Louisiana. She is deeply committed to race equity and strong academic and civics outcomes for students from historically disadvantaged communities.
Chief of Schools, Hartford Public Schools, Connecticut
With a focus of transformational leadership and advocacy, Evette Avila leads efforts that drive systemic change and disrupt the inequities that plague our educational system. As chief of schools for Hartford Public Schools, her emphasis on continuous improvement, systems for student engagement, and the development of a leadership pipeline has increased student outcomes and staff performance. Avila is committed to building equity-centered organizations that are collectively accountable to provide a high-quality education that positively alters the life trajectory of students.
Deputy Superintendent for Teaching and Learning, Rochester City School District, New York
As the deputy superintendent for teaching and learning for the Rochester City School District (RCSD), Kathleen Black is working with her team to ensure that every student has access to high-quality learning experiences every day. She is focused on developing a robust set of programs, ensuring that the faculty and staff are supported and that the district changes the narrative so that RCSD is grounded in equity and excellence. By doing this every child will be prepared to engage in this world in whatever manner they choose.
Associate Superintendent of Educational Services, Wayne Regional Education Service Agency, Michigan
As Wayne County’s associate superintendent of educational services and assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction in Detroit Public Schools Community District, Beth Gonzalez has spearheaded education initiatives that have increased student achievement outcomes in literacy and mathematics, narrowing the gap between Detroit English language learners and national peers as measured by the National Assessment of Educational Progress; expanded access and achievement for students in Advanced Placement and dual enrollment; and has transformed learning opportunities in classrooms through the use of high-quality instructional materials, a focus on equity, professional learning, and support.
CEO, ICEF Public Schools, California
With a commitment to every student no matter who they are or where they attend school, Parker Hudnut passionately pursues educational excellence in both charter and district schools across the country. He not only seeks system-level change (from leading a portfolio of schools educating more than 100,000 students to rebuilding a failed charter management organization), but also treasures individual student development through co-teaching a class called Youth Entrepreneurs, Leaders, and Literature.
Superintendent, North East Independent School District, Texas
Dr. Sean Maika recognizes that best results come when he encourages people to use their greatest strengths in service for something larger than themselves. He leads by example when he reframes challenges as opportunities that create a chain reaction of value throughout the community. He learned customer service helping his mother run a diner, where he saw how listening and empathy organically created connections. He realizes that each one of us is in service to another, regardless of employment position, economics, or social status. Immediately upon appointment to the superintendency, he launched three pillars built on the importance of connections: recruitment, retention, and mental health—a subject which is no longer whispered in counselor offices but is front and center district-wide.
Chief Academic Officer, Indianapolis Public Schools, Indiana
As the chief academic officer for Indianapolis Public Schools, Dr. Warren Morgan oversees the academic vision, strategy, and policy for more than 30,000 students that have led to improvement in student performance in ELA, Math, graduation rates, and school culture indicators. He has served in St. Louis, Chicago, and Cleveland as a classroom teacher, high school principal, principal supervisor, executive director of Teach For America, and has done public policy work as a White House Fellow under Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump. He is an active member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Anibal Soler, Jr.
Superintendent of Schools, Schenectady City Schools, New York
Anibal Soler, Jr. is the proud superintendent of Schenectady City Schools in New York’s Capital Region. He is committed to providing all students he serves access and opportunities to high-quality programs. Soler leads through a learner-centered equity lens that galvanizes staff, strengthens resources, fosters innovation, and builds community.
Assistant Superintendent, Salem-Keizer Public Schools, Oregon
Dr. Iton Udosenata brings nearly 20 years of public school experience and leadership. He currently serves as assistant superintendent for Salem-Keizer Public Schools in Oregon. Prior to his assignment with Salem-Keizer Public, Dr. Udosenata served as a high school principal and social studies teacher. His work focuses deeply on leveraging systems and community to improve equitable outcomes for students.
Chief Equity and Social Justice Officer, Atlanta Public Schools, Georgia
Dr. Tauheedah Baker-Jones has spent the past 19 years working to ensure that every child is provided with an excellent and equitable learning environment in every classroom, every day. In her current role as the Atlanta Public Schools’ first chief equity and social justice officer, Dr. Baker-Jones has successfully led the district in earning its reputation as a national model for intentionally, explicitly, and sustainably addressing challenges of equity in education. Throughout her career, Dr. Baker-Jones has received numerous awards and recognitions, including a recognition by President Barack Obama as a White House Community Leader in Education and the 2020 Harvard University Afolabi Award for Commitment to Educational Justice.
Superintendent, Metropolitan School District of Wayne Township, Indiana
Dr. Jeff Butts became the fifth superintendent in the history of the Metropolitan School District of Wayne Township on January 1, 2011. He restructured the leadership team to more effectively serve the diverse population of students through equitable and inclusionary practices leading to improved academic achievement. He is a 2019 AASA National Superintendent of the Year Finalist and the 2019 Indiana Superintendent of the Year.
Chief Academic Officer, RePublic Schools, Tennessee
Kevin Heffel is the chief academic officer of RePublic Schools, which runs public charter schools in the South and is the largest operator of charter schools in Mississippi. Heffel leads a diverse team of staff members that is reimagining RePublic’s school design to more deeply anchor each school in love, achievement, and anti-racism.
Alicia T. Johnson
President, KIPP NYC Public Schools
Alicia T. Johnson is the president of KIPP NYC, one of the highest-performing regions of KIPP Public Schools, which is the largest charter school network in the country. She is leading the New York City region through a 70% expansion of its footprint, while also supporting continued growth in its student outcomes and operational excellence. Previously to leading the region, Alicia started at the KIPP Through College program, where she helped to lead the increase of the organization’s college graduation rate to 46%—four times the rate for low-income students nationally—and the network’s efforts are now focused on ensuring that all students are ready for careers, regardless of their college choices.
Chief Operating Officer, School District of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Reggie McNeil serves as the chief operating officer for the School District of Philadelphia. He is responsible for executing an approximately $1 billion annual budget aligned to the materials, supplies, and personnel to support the educational programming for approximately 120,000 students. In his role, McNeil advocates for inclusiveness and greater transparency and is focused on transforming the operations division for better outcomes for students and staff. He has a long history of servant leadership. He began his career leading professionals in logistical support during his tenure in the United States Navy.
Thomas D. Rogers
Assistant Superintendent, Memphis-Shelby County Schools, Tennessee
With urgency and accountability, Dr. Thomas D. Rogers, assistant superintendent of Memphis-Shelby County Schools, shepherds the turnaround work in all the district’s priority schools. His commitment to effective transformational and aligned leadership is driven by boundary-spanning practices to improve academic outcomes and graduation rates for all identifiable subgroups. As a result of his leadership impact and influence, he implemented the districtwide use of 90-day plans to isolate root causes and establish enabling conditions for learning through intentional action steps that lead to the desired outcomes for all students.
Susan E. Toth
Chief Academic Officer, KIPP DC Public Schools
Susan Toth is the chief academic officer at KIPP DC Public Schools, the highest-performing K12 school system in Washington, D.C. Toth’s leadership is centered on her vision that schools must be excellent, affirming, and joyful for all students. She believes that school systems can achieve great outcomes for children if they provide steadfast support and development for leaders and teachers, have strong systems for organizational health, and develop caring, trusting, and authentic relationships with all stakeholders.