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Susan Valverde selected among others by the Pahara and Aspen Institutes and Announces New Class of Innovative Leaders for Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship

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Susan Valverde was born in Mexico and Spanish was her first language.  Her dad moved them to Mississippi and the kindness of one teacher there made a significant difference in Susan's life. She is a math and science genius!!  Education is her passion. TBB
Susan Valverde was born in Mexico and Spanish was her first language. Her dad moved them to Mississippi and the kindness of one teacher there made a significant difference in Susan’s life. She is a math and science genius!! Education is her passion. TBB

By Saamra Mekuria-Grillo

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Texas Border Business

SAN FRANCISCO (December 1, 2013) – The Pahara Institute, together with the Aspen Institute, announced today the selection of the Spring 2014 cohort of the highly selective Pahara-Aspen Education Fellows Program. These 24 innovative leaders join the community of leaders who have previously participated in the fellowship, which is designed to support diverse and innovative leaders who are reimagining America’s public schools.

“Support of exceptional leaders is crucial in our efforts to achieve excellence and equity for all our public school students and to create the high quality learning opportunities our communities need,” said Kim Smith, Pahara Institute Founder and CEO. “This new cohort of Pahara-Aspen Fellows exemplifies this kind of bold, innovative leadership talent, and we are humbled to be able to support them.”

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The Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship is a two-year, cohort-based program that identifies innovative leaders in the educational excellence and equity movement, facilitates their dynamic growth, and strengthens their collective efforts to dramatically improve public schools for low-income children and communities. The Fellowship provides these leaders with the unusual opportunity to step back from their demanding daily work to reflect with peers on their collective and individual impact as leaders and change agents. Fellows challenge each other to think beyond traditional silos and sector boundaries to develop strategies that enhance their effectiveness as leaders, address leadership challenges in public education, and accelerate the improvements needed to provide high quality learning opportunities for all of our nation’s children.

The Fellowship is a partnership between the Pahara and Aspen Institutes. The Aspen Institute has created a leadership development model through its renowned Henry Crown Fellowship program aimed at inspiring Fellows to make a lasting difference in their spheres of influence, through the application of effective and enlightened leadership. Pahara-Aspen Fellows become part of the Aspen Global Leadership Network, which currently includes 1700 Fellows from 46 countries that are collectively making tremendous positive change in the world.

The Spring 2014 Pahara-Aspen Education Fellows are:

            Marcia Aaron, Executive Director, KIPP LA Schools

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            Lars Beck, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Scholar Academies

            Jason Bernal, President and Chief Executive Officer, YES Prep Public Schools

            Donnell Butler, Senior Associate Dean for Planning & Analysis of Student Outcomes, Franklin & Marshall College

            Kenneth L. Campbell, President, Black Alliance for Educational Options

            Karen Cator, President and Chief Executive Officer, Digital Promise

            Rick Cruz, Former Chief Executive Officer, DC Prep

            Jacqueline Elliot, President and Chief Executive Officer, PUC National & Co-Founder, Partnerships to Uplift Communities Schools

            Frederick J. Ferrer, Chief Executive Officer, The Health Trust

            Libia Gil, Assistant Deputy Secretary and Director, Office of English Language Acquisition

            Keri Hoyt, Chief Operating Officer, Success Academy Charter Schools

            Julie Jackson, Managing Director, Uncommon Schools

            Carolyn Laub, Founder and Executive Director, Gay-Straight Alliance Network

            Benjamin Marcovitz, Founder, Sci Academy & Chief Executive Officer, Collegiate Academies

            Nina S. Rees, President and Chief Executive Officer, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

            Jeremy Resnick, Executive Director, Propel Schools Foundation & Founder, Propel Schools

            Juan Salgado, President and Chief Executive Officer, Instituto del Progreso Latino

            Joe Scantlebury, Senior Program Officer, US Program Policy & Advocacy, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

            Mora Segal, Chief Executive Officer, The Achievement Network

            Abigail Smith, Deputy Mayor for Education, District of Columbia

            Andrea Stouder Pursley, Executive Vice President of Alumni Affairs, Teach for America

            Susan Valverde, Franchisee and Executive Director, Sylvan Learning in Rio Grande Valley, Texas

            Dan Varner, Chief Executive Officer, Excellent Schools Detroit

            Rob Waldron, Chief Executive Officer, Curriculum Associates

“The Aspen Global Leadership Network is comprised of entrepreneurial change makers disrupting the status quo to improve the lives of others. We believe that Pahara-Aspen Fellows are doing just that in public education.  We can’t afford to fail in this endeavor. Our children and our collective future depend on it,” said Peter Reiling, Executive Vice President, Leadership and Seminar Programs at the Aspen Institute. “The Aspen Institute is pleased to continue this partnership with Pahara, and welcomes this outstanding cohort of leaders into the Aspen Global Leadership Network.”


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