Executive Vice President
Executive Vice President
Alex comes to Generation Ready with 18 years of leadership experience in the educational services industry. Throughout his career, Alex has successfully expanded services to his customers, while leading initiatives to improve operational performance, academic quality and student outcomes. Prior to joining Generation Ready, Alex was Senior Vice President, Operations at Catapult Learning where he was responsible for the business development, strategic planning, academic quality, and operations for the Company’s Midwest and West Territories. Prior to Catapult, Alex spent 12 years at Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions, in a variety of important business leadership and operational roles. During his tenure, he oversaw the majority of Kaplan Test Prep’s U.S and International businesses, while leading the company’s National Field Strategy and Operations during a time of transformational change for the organization. Alex began his career in the automotive industry, where he held several continuous improvement and management roles before being promoted to President and General Manager of the division after four years in the business. An innovative and results-oriented leader, Alex is committed to the development of highly effective teams and passionate about improving student growth by improving educators’ practices.
Chief Academic Officer
Michelle is responsible for providing leadership in all aspects of the quality and nature of professional learning and teaching services and advises on the implementation of innovative solutions to new strategic initiatives. She is involved with a wide range of initiatives including the Bronx Plan, A Comprehensive Approach to Equity and the Middle School Balanced Literacy Initiative.
Michelle joined Generation Ready in 2014 as a consultant with over 25 years of experience in educational settings. She brought with her a depth of expertise in instructional and transformational leadership, highly effective consulting in literacy and leadership, and vast experience in coaching and facilitating professional learning and teaching opportunities.
Michelle strives to promote educational equity and displays exceptional leadership in supporting consultants in their development, direction and monitoring professional learning with research-driven innovative and proven strategies. She is committed to facilitating collective efficacy from the local to state levels.
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.
South General Manager
Edwin joined Generation Ready in 2018 and currently serves as the South General Manager where he is responsible for all aspects of implementation and quality for Generation Ready engagements in the South Region.
Edwin has spent the past 23 years making a positive impact on student achievement across a variety of K-12 roles and organizations. He has served schools and communities as a classroom teacher, instructional leader, assistant principal, principal and district leader. Edwin is an educator and motivational speaker with a career in education that spans the spectrum.
Prior to his time at Generation Ready, he worked as the Regional Director for the South Region at America’s Choice, Vice President of School Services at Framework Educational Consulting, and held multiple executive level positions at various for-profit education organizations. Edwin holds a BA in Elementary Education, a MA, an Ed.S. and Ed.D. in Education Administration from the University of Arkansas.
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.
Gregory R. Anrig Professor of Educational Leadership, Administration, Planning and Social Policy, Harvard Graduate School of Education
Dr. Richard Elmore joined the faculty of the Harvard Graduate School of Education in 1990, having previously taught at the College of Education, Michigan State University, and the Graduate School of Public Affairs, University of Washington. Richard is a member of the National Academy of Education, and a past president of the Association for Public Policy and Management, the national organization representing graduate programs in public policy and management. He has held positions in the federal government as a legislative liaison with the U.S. Congress on education policy issues. He is currently director of the Doctor in Educational Leadership (Ed.L.D.) program at HGSE. His current research and clinical work focuses on building capacity for instructional improvement in low-performing schools. Richard spends at least one day per week in schools, working with teachers and administrators on instructional improvement. He is coauthor of Instructional Rounds in Education: A Network Approach to Improving Teaching and Learning (Harvard Education Press, 2009), and author of School Reform From the Inside Out: Policy, Practice, and Performance (Harvard Education Press, 2004).
Distinguished Professor of Education, Graduate School of Education and Information Sciences, UCLA
Pedro Noguera is a Distinguished Professor of Education in the Graduate School of Education and Information Sciences at UCLA. His research focuses on the ways in which schools are influenced by social and economic conditions, as well as by demographic trends in local, regional and global contexts. He is the author of eleven books and over 200 articles and monographs. He serves on the boards of numerous national and local organizations and appears as a regular commentator on educational issues on CNN, MSNBC, National Public Radio, and other national news outlets. Prior to joining the faculty at UCLA he served as a tenured professor and holder of endowed chairs at New York University (2003 – 2015) Harvard University (2000 – 2003) and the University of California, Berkeley (1990 – 2000). From 2009 – 2012 he served as a Trustee for the State University of New York (SUNY) as an appointee of the Governor. In 2014 he was elected to the National Academy of Education. Noguera recently received awards from the Center for the Advanced Study of the Behavioral Sciences, from the National Association of Secondary Principals, and from the McSilver Institute at NYU for his research and advocacy efforts aimed at fighting poverty.
Co-director of the Education Policy Center and Distinguished Professor, Michigan State
Dr. William Schmidt is a University Distinguished Professor and co-director of the Education Policy Center. He holds faculty appointments in measurement and quantitative methods and the Department of Statistics. William’s current writing and research concerns issues of academic content in K- 12 schooling, teacher preparation and the effects of curriculum on academic achievement. He is also concerned with educational policy related to mathematics, science and testing in general. He is a member of the National Academy of Education and a fellow of the American Educational Research Association (AERA).
Director of WestEd’s Teacher Professional Development Program
Dr. Aída Walqui directs WestEd’s Teacher Professional Development Program as well as the Quality Teaching for English Learners (QTEL) project. As Director of QTEL, Walqui brings a career long focus on increasing the academic success of English language learners. She leads the development and implementation of the QTEL approach to professional development and the articulation of QTEL principles in the development of QTEL curricula. Walqui collaborates with school and district leaders across the country to tailor QTEL implementation that is responsive to local needs. She is often found observing and coaching in the classrooms of teachers learning the QTEL approach.
Aída has taught in high school and university settings, including the School of Education at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and Stanford University, where she coordinated the cross-cultural, linguistic, and academic development emphasis in the STEP program. She has also taught in other universities in Peru, Mexico, England, and the United States. Aída has authored books for the study of Spanish for Spanish speakers in American schools; a book for teachers of Spanish as a second language in Andean countries; a book on the teaching of indigenous languages in intercultural, bilingual programs; an ethnographic study of immigrant students in secondary schools in the United States; and a number of articles in journals and edited volumes. She is a member of several national and international teacher professional development advisory boards.
President and CEO of the QEM Network, professor of counseling psychology at Howard University and editor-in-chief of The Journal of Negro Education
Dr. Ivory A. Toldson is the president and CEO of the QEM Network, professor of counseling psychology at Howard University and editor-in-chief of The Journal of Negro Education. Previously, Dr. Toldson was appointed by President Barack Obama to devise national strategies to sustain and expand federal support to HBCUs as the executive director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (WHIHBCUs). He also served as senior research analyst for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and contributing education editor for The Root, where he debunked some of the most pervasive myths about African-Americans in his Show Me the Numbers column.
Dr. Toldson was promoted to full professor while on leave from Howard University to serve President Obama’s administration. He spent 3.5 years at Southern University and A&M College (SU), in Baton Rouge, LA, and more than a decade at Howard University in Washington, DC. At SU, Dr. Toldson was named young researcher of the year after successfully competing for the prestigious W.E.B. DuBois Fellowship from the U.S. Department of Justice. Dr. Toldson continued a high level of research productivity at Howard University, evidence by publishing 4 books, and more than 65 scholarly publications including articles in peer-refereed journals, book chapters, and policy reports. Dr. Toldson became the Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Negro Education (established 1932) in 2008, where he led an effort to modernize The Journal, moving it to an online platform for peer reviews and subscriptions, while keeping it independently owned and run by Howard University. His efforts attracted many new international subscribers.
Dr. Toldson was dubbed a leader “who could conceivably navigate the path to the White House” by the Washington Post, one of “30 leaders in the fight for Black men,” by Newsweek Magazine, and the “Problem Solver” by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education. Dr. Toldson, according to former U.S. Secretary Arne Duncan, is “a prolific young scholar and myth buster.” According to NPR, Dr. Toldson has “a desire to shed new light on old issues.” A sought-after speaker, Dr. Toldson has been featured on MSNBC, C-SPAN2 Books, NPR News, POTUS on XM Satellite Radio, and numerous national and local radio stations. In print, his research has been featured in The Washington Post, CNN.com, The New York Times, The Root, The National Journal, Essence Magazine, BET.com, The Grio, and Ebony Magazine.
Dr. Toldson was named in the 2013 and 2014 The Root 100, an annual ranking of the most influential African-American leaders. His body of research was featured in The Foundation Center report, Building a Beloved Community, for his role in shaping sponsored programs for Black male achievement. Dr. Toldson was awarded the: Equity Champion Award from the New York City Department of Education; Outstanding Alumni Award from Penn State Black Alumni Association; Top 25 Forensic Psychology Professors, ForensicsColleges.com; and The Emerging Scholar designation from the Diverse Magazine.
Professor of Practice in Educational Leadership at North Carolina State University
Dr. Mike Ward serves as a consultant to state and local education leaders on matters related to leadership, school improvement, strategic planning, and assessment. He is also a professor of practice in educational leadership at North Carolina State University.
From 1997 to 2004, Mike served two terms as State Superintendent of Public Instruction of North Carolina. During his tenure, the state earned a reputation for rapid progress in the performance of its public schools. He is past President of the Council of Chief State School Officers and a past member of the National Assessment Governing Board, which oversees the administration of National Assessment of Educational Progress.
Mike is a past recipient of North Carolina’s Superintendent of the Year award. A three-time graduate of North Carolina State University, he received the University’s Distinguished Alumnus Award. While at the University of Southern Mississippi, he was cited as a Hero of Katrina and received the College of Education and Psychology’s Excellence in Teaching Award.
Mike is an active volunteer. He is engaged with community development in South Sudan. He co-founded and chairs FAST NC (Florence Aid to Students and Teachers of North Carolina) and serves on the board of the North Carolina Foundation for Public School Children. He is chair of the Advisory Board of the College of Education at North Carolina State University.
Associate Professor of Education, Harvard Graduate School
Dr. Jal Mehta is an Associate Professor in Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. His primary research interest is in understanding what it would take to create high quality schooling at scale, with a particular interest in the professionalization of teaching. He is the co-editor of the recently released The Futures of School Reform (Cambridge: Harvard Education Press, 2012), and the author of the forthcoming The Allure of Order: High Hopes, Dashed Expectations and the Troubled Quest to Remake American Schooling (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013). Jal is currently working on two projects: The Chastened Dream, a history of the effort to link social science with social policy to achieve social progress; and In Search of Deeper Learning, a contemporary study of schools, systems, and nations that are seeking to produce ambitious instruction. Jal received his Ph.D. in Sociology and Social Policy from Harvard University.