Press Release: January 21, 2015

Pahara and Aspen Institutes Announce New Class of Exceptional Leaders for Pahara-Aspen Fellowship

SAN FRANCISCO (January 21st, 2015) – The Pahara Institute, together with the Aspen Institute, announced today the selection of the Spring 2015 cohort of the highly selective Pahara-Aspen Education Fellows Program. These 25 innovative leaders join the more than 250 leaders who have previously participated in the fellowship, which is designed to support diverse and exceptional leaders who are reimagining America’s public schools.

“The newest cohort of Pahara-Aspen Fellows inspires us with their passion and imagination. They have the kind of leadership talent we need to reimagine how our public schools can prepare all our young people for life, work and citizenship in the global knowledge age,” said Kim Smith, Pahara Institute Founder and CEO. “We are honored to be able to support these exceptional leaders in their efforts to create innovative, high quality learning environments for all students, particularly those who have been traditionally underserved.”

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 1,900 Fellows from 48 countries that are collectively making tremendous positive change in the world.

The Spring 2015 Pahara-Aspen Education Fellows are:

  • Tonya Allen, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Skillman Foundation
  • Kara Bobroff, Executive Director, Native American Community Academy-Inspired Schools Network
  • Chaka Booker, Managing Director, The Broad Residency in Urban Education
  • April Chou, Chief Growth and Operating Officer, KIPP Bay Area Schools
  • Becky Crowe, Partner, Bellwether Education Partners
  • Jon Deane, Chief Information Officer, Summit Public Schools
  • Monica Garcia, Member, Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education
  • Chris Gibbons, Chief Executive Officer, STRIVE Preparatory Schools
  • Bryan C. Hassel, Co-Director, Public Impact
  • Elana Karopkin-Gold, Regional Superintendent, Achievement First
  • Alton B. Nelson, Jr., Chief Executive Officer, Making Waves Academy
  • Andrew Neumann, President and Chief Executive Officer, Education Enterprises, Inc.
  • Rosemary Perlmeter, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Teaching Trust
  • Earl Martin Phalen, Founder, Phalen Leadership Academies and Summer Advantage USA
  • Gerard RobinsonTrustee, Patten University
  • Thomas L. Rooney, Superintendent, Lindsay Unified School District
  • Lisa Scruggs, Partner, Duane Morris, LLP
  • Renata Soto, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Conexion Americas
  • K. Brooke Stafford-Brizard, Ph.D., Independent Consultant
  • Jeff Wetzler, Executive Vice President of Strategy, Innovation and Organizational Development, Teach for America
  • Tammy Mank Wincup, Chief Operating Officer, EverFi, Inc.
  • Stephanie Wu, Chief Program Design and Evaluation Officer & Senior Vice President, City Year, Inc.

“The Aspen Institute is pleased to continue to partner with Pahara, and to welcome this cohort of exceptionally talented, innovative leaders into The Aspen Global Leadership Network,” said Peter Reiling, Executive Vice President, Leadership and Seminar Programs at the Aspen Institute. “These Pahara-Aspen Fellows join an international cadre of entrepreneurial, values-driven leaders who are driving creative and impactful efforts to solve some of the most difficult challenges facing our communities and global society.”

To access bios and photos of the Pahara-Aspen Fellows, click here.

For More Information:
Saamra Mekuria-Grillo, Vice President of Strategy and Operations, Pahara Institute,

About the Pahara Institute

The Pahara Institute is a national nonprofit organization focused on supporting the sustainability, diversity, and quality of leadership for the educational excellence and equity movement. The guiding principle of the Pahara Institute is that bold improvements are needed to our public schools so that every child in America has access to the tools and skills he or she needs to be successful in life. Pahara’s programs, including the Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship, are designed to identify seasoned leaders in education reform, and through a time-tested dialogue approach, strengthen and sustain their efforts to bring about transformational improvements to our public schools. Pahara’s work strives to overcome inequalities in our society by accelerating innovations and reforms that increase access to high-quality education for all children, particularly those in low-income and underserved communities.


The Aspen Institute Logo

About the Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute has campuses in Aspen, Colorado, and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It also maintains offices in New York City and has an international network of partners.

Aspen Global Leadership Network Logo

About the Aspen Global Leadership Network

The Aspen Global Leadership Network is a growing, worldwide community of entrepreneurial leaders from business, government and the nonprofit sector — currently, nearly 1,900 “Fellows” from 48 countries — who share a commitment to enlightened leadership and to using their extraordinary creativity, energy and resources to tackle the foremost societal challenges of our times. All share the common experience of participating in the Henry Crown Fellowship or one of the dozen Aspen Institute leadership initiatives it has inspired in the United States, Africa, Central America, India, the Middle East and China.

Comments are closed.