While 2020 has been full of challenges, The Leadership Academy has so much to be thankful for.

We have been honored to partner with school and system leaders across the country who are working harder than ever to give every one of their students the best possible learning experiences under incredibly difficult circumstances.

We are seeing leaders take incredible risks to become culturally responsive leaders. They are reflecting on their own biases and helping their teams do the same. They are examining their policies and practices with an eye toward creating schools that are intentionally built for every student.

Thank you aspiring superintendents in Massachusetts’ Influence 100 fellowship for your commitment to learning to lead as culturally responsive leaders. Thank you, district leaders across Texas, for taking the first steps toward examining student learning data and publicly acknowledging where students need better access to rigorous and culturally responsive learning experiences. Thank you, Des Moines Public Schools, for creating space to listen to the needs of students, families and teachers, and responding to those needs.

Thank you to every leader who is taking a stand, who is taking the time to examine everything from the way kindergarten teachers are talking about Thanksgiving to why some families are deciding not to return to in-person school. Thank you, leaders who are courageous enough to name that returning to business as usual in schools means returning to an unjust, inequitable system – and thus are willing to disrupt what existed and create inclusive affirming learning spaces for every student.

Please know that The Leadership Academy stands with you. We are here to support you. We are in this work together.

If you are committed to making sure every child has access to rigorous learning experiences, if you believe, as we do, that every child needs and deserves a learning environment that values them for who they are, where each child can bring their whole selves every day and feel safe and valued, then support The Leadership Academy on #GivingTuesday, Dec. 1.

Adelante,

Nancy

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Nancy B. Gutiérrez, Ed.L.D.

President & CEO

Dr. Nancy B. Gutiérrez is President & CEO of The Leadership Academy. Nancy joined The Leadership Academy in 2014 and has served as National Leadership Designer and Facilitator, Vice President of District Leadership, and Chief Strategy Officer. She was named President & CEO in July 2018 and continues to serve as an executive leadership coach and facilitator for school systems across the country. She was a Fall 2019 Pahara-Aspen Education Fellow, and in February 2020 was named among the 100 most powerful education leaders in New York by City & State New York. Nancy is a frequent keynote speaker for local and national education organizations and has authored numerous pieces on education leadership and equity for national publications including Education Week, Kappan, The74, and Hechinger Report.

Nancy began her career as a teacher and principal in her home community of East San Jose, CA, where she was the founding principal of Renaissance Academy, the highest performing middle school in the district and a California Distinguished School. Nancy also led the successful effort to turn around the district’s lowest performing middle school. She was named the UC Davis Rising Star and Association of California School Administrator’s Region 8 Middle School Principal of the Year in 2010. Prior to her tenure with The Leadership Academy, Nancy launched a program for executive leadership advancement for the New York City Department of Education that led to superintendent certification.

Nancy is a graduate of the inaugural cohort of the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Doctor of Education Leadership (Ed.L.D.) program and is a graduate of the Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (ALAS) Aspiring Superintendents Academy. She served on the national board of the Coalition of Essential Schools for more than a decade. She is an instructor at NYU and frequently teaches at the Harvard Principals’ Center institutes for School Turnaround Leaders, Urban School Leaders, and Race, Equity, Access, and Leadership. Nancy is a member of the Education Leaders of Color (EdLoC) Board of Directors and serves on the Latinos for Education teaching team.

Find Nancy on Twitter @nancybgutierrez or LinkedIn.