Justin brings 20 years of education experience to his role as the Chief Executive Officer of Generation Ready. Prior to joining Generation Ready, Justin served as managing director of education at Weld North, a consumer- and education-focused investment company. Justin’s previous education experience included working his way through the ranks of Kaplan Test Prep, beginning work there in 1995 and ultimately rising to president of Kaplan K-12 and College Prep in 2010. Justin started his career earning a degree in Social Services and his motivation in spreading the mission of Generation Ready is grounded in his strong beliefs about education’s key role in addressing inequality.
Justin received his Bachelor’s Degree from Cornell University and his MBA from Harvard Business School.
Chief Academic Officer & Advisory Board Co-Chair
Sheena is responsible for providing educational leadership for Generation Ready. Sheena is one of the original literacy experts that brought Balanced Literacy to the United States in the 1990s and was responsible for spearheading the partnership between Generation Ready and New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) to roll out the Middle School Quality Initiative, now in place in over 100 middle schools.
Sheena had a national profile in New Zealand for her work in literacy. She worked with the New Zealand Ministry of Education in a consultancy role. She was a member of the National Advisory Group for the development of the NZ National English Curriculum Statement. She has also served as a teacher, administrator, reading advisor and the Director of Primary Programs at the Dunedin College of Education.
A noted author in the area of literacy, her publications include The Reader as Learner, Dancing with the Pen, Reading for Life, and Exploring Language.
Senior Vice President
Bill has worked a variety of countries in all areas of education for over 30 years – from teacher, school leader, advisor and consultant. He currently provides the strategic direction for professional development and consultancy to support leadership growth, teacher effectiveness, school reform and student achievement in schools and districts.
Bill works closely with Sheena in providing oversight and direction on the core foundational principles of the company to ensure that the resources, tools and processes applied by the consultants are created, studied and modified to ensure academic success. Over the past 15 years he has been responsible for relationship building for the organization and has served as an advisor to existing school districts, specifically New York City, as well as developing new relationships in K-12 education across the United States.
Director of Literacy Services
In 2016, Gianna joined Generation Ready as the Director of Literacy Services. Gianna is responsible for the design, implementation and quality for all professional development partnerships in the New England area.
She began her teaching career in 1992 in District 2 in New York City, where she developed expertise in the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project approach as well as in balanced literacy. Her passion for urban education led her to co-found and lead public, charter conversion, and charter schools in Harlem, New York, and in Denver, Colorado.
Gianna Cassetta is the co-author of two books, Classroom Management Matters: The Social and Emotional Learning Approach That Children Deserve, and No More Taking Away Recess and Other Problematic Discipline Practices. Gianna also authored Literacy Centers: a Standards Based Approach for Grades 3 and Beyond and is featured in accompanying instructional videos on effective literacy practices, including Step into Guided Reading.
General Manager, South Region
Meesha is responsible for all aspects of implementation and quality for Generation Ready engagements in the South Region. She is an expert facilitator of adolescent and adult learning with expertise in literacy, standards-based learning, social-emotional learning, and communications for development.
Meesha has served schools and communities as a teacher, instructional leader, and administrator. As a national literacy expert and leader, she aids states and districts in creating and implementing College and Career Ready Standards for all students. She also served as Director of Literacy for the NYC Department of Education, working with colleagues across teams to refine policy and improve support for schools and networks during the district’s shift to the Common Core.
Meesha has consulted with Achieve, Inc. on the EQuIP project (Educators Evaluating Quality Instructional Products), served on the review panel for Engage NY curriculum materials, and is a member of the design team for the Odell Education on the Core Proficiency curriculum series.
Director of Equity Services
Erick joined Generation Ready in 2013 and currently serves as the Director of Equity Services. His background as a school leader, his doctorate in Educational Justice, and his own life experiences, make him uniquely poised to direct our West Coast partnerships and additionally bring cultural proficiency/equity work to our partner districts throughout the state of California and nationwide.
Erick is an educator, professor and motivational speaker with a career in education that spans the spectrum: classroom teacher, assistant principal, principal, district leader, and adjunct professor in Southern California. He has held many local, state and national offices in the National Alliance of Black School Educators, serves on the California Staff Development Council and has received many awards for his work in education.
Erick received his Bachelor’s of Science degree in Elementary Education from Kansas Newman University, a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from Wichita State University and a Doctoral Degree in Leadership for Educational Justice from the University of Redlands.
General Manager, NYC
Becky has spent over 20 years volunteering and working in education, ranging from adult education to postsecondary to K-12 education. She transitioned from the Chief Marketing Officer position at Generation Ready to serve as the General Manager of New York City. In this role, Becky leads the team responsible for working closely with NYC district leaders and principals to design and implement professional development work, oversee and support our team of consultants working in the schools, and develop relationships in new districts. Prior to her time at Generation Ready, she worked as the Executive Director of Market Development and Strategy at The College Board, the Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer at Edison Learning, Inc., and held multiple executive level positions at McGraw-Hill.
Becky received her MBA from University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and graduated with distinction with her BA in International Relations from the University of Michigan.