Board Members

The Board

The National Board is governed by a 29-member board of directors, the majority of whom are National Board Certified Teachers and teaching professionals. The other directors include a former state commissioner of education, school board leaders, higher education officials, union leaders, and community leaders.

The National Board’s President and CEO also serves on the Board of Directors. You can read individual NBPTS Board member biographies by using the links below. The National Board also honors the leadership of our former Board members.

Megan Allen, NBCT

Megan Allen, NBCT

Mount Holyoke College SouthHadley, Massachusetts

Megan Allen, NBCT

Mount Holyoke College SouthHadley, Massachusetts

Dr. Megan M. Allen, NBCT, is the 2010 Teacher of the Year and a finalist for the 2010 National Teacher of the Year. She is the lead dreamer and doer for Tailored Learning Supports, serving as the Chief Learning Curator. She is a National Board Certified Teacher who has worked in several roles in education, including 10 years as an elementary school teacher in Florida. She was also the director of the Master of Arts in Teacher Leadership at Mount Holyoke College, where she envisioned, pitched, and developed two graduate level programs to support teachers across the world in their informal and formal leadership capacities. A huge education nerd, she currently writes education columns and blog posts, consults, and coaches teachers and principals as they shift to distance learning. She also serves as a Professor of Practice at Mount Holyoke College, where she supports teachers and coaches in their leadership development. Megan is proud to serve on the Board of Directors for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards but is the proudest to be a mom of one beautiful little girl

Heather Anderson, NBCT

Heather Anderson, NBCT

Reading and Math Intervention Teacher and Literacy CoachBend, OR

Heather Anderson, NBCT

Reading and Math Intervention Teacher and Literacy CoachBend, OR

Heather Anderson has been a teacher since 2001 and became a National Board Certified Teacher in 2005. She has taught in Maryland and Oregon in both elementary and middle schools and is currently the Reading and Math Intervention Teacher and Literacy Coach at Juniper Technology Magnet School in Bend, Oregon. In 2016, she was recognized as the Oregon Teacher of the Year and in 2017, she also received the NEA Award for Teaching Excellence. She received her B.A. from Oregon State University and M.A.T. from George Fox University. She also has an M.A. in Teacher Leadership from Johns Hopkins University and an EdS in Educational Technology from Walden University.   She coaches and supports educators in a variety of areas ranging from National Board Certification to best practices in ELL, literacy, and math. She aspires to empower students in her community and provide them with educational technology opportunities.

Peggy Brookins, NBCT

Peggy Brookins, NBCT

President and CEO

Peggy Brookins, NBCT

President and CEO

Former NBPTS Board member Peggy Brookins, NBCT, joined the National Board as Executive Vice President in December 2014 and was named President & CEO in November 2015. Her long career as an educator includes many national leadership positions and accolades. In July 2014, President Barack Obama named Brookins as a member of the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans. She came to the National Board from the Engineering and Manufacturing Institute of Technology at Forest High School in Ocala, Florida, which she co-founded in 1994 and where she served as director and as a mathematics instructor.

She served on the NBPTS Board from 2007 to 2011. In addition, she has served on the board of, The Conference Board of Mathematical Sciences Ad Hoc Committee on Teachers as Professionals, the Content Technical Working Group for the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, a commissioner on the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), P21 Executive Board, and the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) Teacher Prep Commission.  She has been a national trainer for AFT (Thinking Mathematics K-2, 3-6, 6-8 Common Core, collaborator and national trainer for Thinking Mathematics 6-8). She currently serves on the Advisory Board of Digital Promise, National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE) Executive Board, Fund for Teachers Executive Board, Out Teach Executive Board, Bowie State University and the STAR Program Advisory Board, National Geographic Education Audit Advisory Board, Eddie and Jules Trump Foundation of Israel Advisory Board, and the Class Strategic Advisory Board.

Brookins achieved her certification in Adult and Young Adolescent Mathematics in 2003 and renewed in 2013. She was inducted into the University of Florida Alumni Hall of Fame in 2009, Received the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) “Woodie Flowers” Award in 2016, is a Florida Education Association “Everyday Hero,” and received the association’s Excellence in Teaching Award. In 2013, Brookins was named an Aspen Ideas Festival Scholar.

James Brooks, NBCT

James Brooks, NBCT

West Wilkes High SchoolMillers Creek, NC

James Brooks, NBCT

West Wilkes High SchoolMillers Creek, NC

Jim Brooks, Ed.D., teaches English, Latin and Journalism at West Wilkes High School. He is a twice renewed National Board Certified Teacher in Adolescent/ Young Adult, English/Language Arts (2018).

In 2007 he received the National Education Association’s Excellence in Teaching Award and was honored by the National Council of Teachers of English with the 2008 National Media Literacy Award. He was named Outstanding North Carolina English Teacher by the North Carolina English Teachers Association in 2010.

Jim was inducted into the National Teacher Hall of Fame in 2012. He serves on the National Council for the Advancement of Educator Ethics.  A former NC Hope Street Group Teacher Voice Fellow, he currently serves on the Hope Street Group National Teacher Advisory Council. Jim received his bachelor’s degree, master’s and doctoral degrees from Appalachian State University.

Sarah Brown Wessling, NBCT

Sarah Brown Wessling, NBCT

Johnston High SchoolJohnston, Iowa

Sarah Brown Wessling, NBCT

Johnston High SchoolJohnston, Iowa

Sarah Brown Wessling, NBCT. Sarah is the 2010 National Teacher of the Year and a 23-year veteran of the high school English classroom and former Teacher Laureate for the Teaching Channel. She is a National Board Certified Teacher since 2005 and serves as the Vice Chair for the NBPTS Executive Board. She is a frequent speaker and facilitator of professional learning around the country and an avid blogger and writer. Currently, she is also serving as Senior Advisor for the National Teacher of the Year Program, which she has worked with for the past 11 years as a facilitator, designer of professional learning and consultant. Sarah is author of Supporting Students in a Time of Core Standards and maintains a website at: sarahbrownwessling.com. She is, most importantly, mom to Evan, Lauren and Zachary who keep her grounded and laughing. She works full time from Des Moines, Iowa. Follow Sarah on Twitter @SarahBWessling and on Instagram @sarahbrownwessling

Elizabeth Brown-Davis, NBCT

Elizabeth Brown-Davis, NBCT

Lockhart Elementary Magnet SchoolTampa, FL

Elizabeth Brown-Davis, NBCT

Lockhart Elementary Magnet SchoolTampa, FL

Elizabeth Brown-Davis teaches at Lockhart Elementary School in Hillsborough County, Florida. As a National Board Certified Teacher in Early and Middle Childhood/Literacy:Reading-Language Arts (2015), Elizabeth seeks to work particularly with students “at risk” of meeting proficiency levels in literacy.  Her passion for teaching literacy is driven by the use of innovative teaching methods, suitable for all learners.

Brown-Davis previously taught in New York City Public Schools for over 25 years. She worked with the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) Teacher Center facilitating professional development. During her tenure with the UFT Teacher Center, Elizabeth was inspired to attain National Board Certification in literacy.

Elizabeth mentors candidates who are seeking National Board certification with the support of the Hillsborough Classroom Teachers Association and the Aspire Cadre Academy. In addition, Elizabeth is currently pursuing her Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Assessment studies at the University of West Florida. Her research examines various interventions used to support academically challenged students to meet proficiency levels in literacy.

Mary Cathryn Ricker, NBCT

Mary Cathryn Ricker, NBCT

Executive Director, Albert Shanker InstituteWashington, DC

Mary Cathryn Ricker, NBCT

Executive Director, Albert Shanker InstituteWashington, DC

Mary Cathryn Ricker, is a National Board Certified Middle School English Teacher and the Executive Director of the Albert Shanker Institute. She previously served as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Education and as the Executive Vice President of the American Federation of Teachers. She is the past President of the St. Paul Federation of Teachers, a 4000+ member union serving the teachers and Educational Assistants in St. PaulPublic Schools. Prior to being elected president, she was a classroom teacher in middle school English/Language arts for 13 years in St. Cloud, MN; Camas, WA; and Seoul, South Korea. She also taught for 5 years in St. Paul Public Schools. She was recentlyelected to the Education Minnesota Governing Board and she previously served on Education Minnesota’s statewide Professional Advocacy member committee. She is a local delegate to the St. Paul Area Trades and Labor Assembly and serves on the board of the Minnesota AFL-CIO.In 2005,Ms. Ricker was the Minnesota recipient and national semi-finalist of the NEA Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence. She was selected as one of eight teachers to film a national professional development video series calledWrite in the Middlefor teachers of writing funded by the Annenberg Foundation. She has been invited to present teaching and writing strategies at the Minnesota Council of Teachers of English annual conference, the National Council of Teachers of English annual convention, and the National Writing Project annual conference. She is a member of and was past Middle School Chair on the board of the Minnesota Council of Teachers of English

Melissa Collins, NBCT

Melissa Collins, NBCT

Elementary School TeacherMemphis, TN

Melissa Collins, NBCT

Elementary School TeacherMemphis, TN

Melissa Collins has been an elementary school teacher at John P. Freeman Optional School in Memphis, TN, for 21 years, where she is constantly amazed by her students’ curiosity about the world around them. She is an expert in teacher leadership and voice, and she is an advocate for global learning, STEM education, and high standards. To help ensure that all children have access to a caring and committed teacher, she has mentored several teachers through the National Board process. Melissa is the recipient of several awards and honors, including the 2020 National Teacher Hall of Fame inductee, Sanford Teacher Award, Harriet Sanford Award, National Board Fellowship Program, the Global Teacher Prize Finalist (Top 50), the Queen Smith Award, the Stephen Sondheim Award, the Horace Mann Award for Teaching Excellence, the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, the National Science Teaching Association Sylvia Shugrue Award, and the West Tennessee Teacher of the Year. She is a proud National Board Certified Teacher in the area of Early Childhood Education

Sharif El-Mekki

Sharif El-Mekki

Founder and CEO of the Center for Black Educator DevelopmentPhiladelphia, PA

Sharif El-Mekki

Founder and CEO of the Center for Black Educator DevelopmentPhiladelphia, PA

Sharif El-Mekki is the Founder and CEO of the Center for Black Educator Development. The Center exists to ensure there will be equity in the recruiting, training, hiring, and retention of quality educators that reflect the cultural backgrounds and share common socio-political interests of the students they serve. The Center is developing a nationally relevant model to measurably increase teacher diversity and support Black educators through four pillars: Professional Learning, Pipeline, Policies, and Pedagogy. So far, the Center has developed ongoing and direct professional learning, mentoring, and coaching opportunities for Black teachers and other educators serving students of color.

The Center also carries forth the freedom or liberation school legacy by hosting Freedom School sites that incorporates research-based curricula and exposes high school and college students to the teaching profession to help fuel a pipeline of Black educators.

Prior to founding the Center, El-Mekki served as a nationally recognized principal and U.S. Department of Education Principal Ambassador Fellow. His school, Mastery Charter Shoemaker, was recognized by President Obama and Oprah Winfrey, and was awarded the prestigious EPIC award for three consecutive years as being amongst the top three schools in the country for accelerating students’ achievement levels. The Shoemaker Campus was also recognized as one of the top ten middle school and top ten high schools in the state of Pennsylvania for accelerating the achievement levels of African-American students.

In 2014, El-Mekki founded The Fellowship – Black Male Educators for Social Justice, an organization dedicated to recruiting, retaining, and developing Black male teachers. El-Mekki blogs on Phillys7thWard, is a member of the 8 Black Hands podcast and serves on several boards and committees focused on educational and racial justice.

Kelly Elder, NBCT

Kelly Elder, NBCT

C.R. Anderson Middle SchoolHelena, MT

Kelly Elder, NBCT

C.R. Anderson Middle SchoolHelena, MT

Kelly Elder has been teaching 6th grade World Geography for over a decade at C.R. Anderson Middle School in Helena, Montana. Mr. Elder began his career working as a Montana Exchange Teacher in Kumamoto, Japan. This experience allowed him to focus primarily on high school students, but spend one day a week in a nearby elementary school. It was through this overseas position that Mr. Elder realized he could one day teach early adolescents. Back in the states, Mr. Elder began work teaching American History at Fergus High School in Lewistown, Montana. After earning his masters in Political Science/Constitutional History as a James Madison Fellow ’00, Elder began teaching American Government. He also added two courses to the offerings at his school: Economics and AP Government.

Mr. Elder earned National Board Certification in Early Adolescence/Social Studies-History in 2009, instilling reflection as a standard part of his practice and resulting in an unending quest to improve his teaching for all students. In 2017, Elder joined other professional educators in testifying before the state legislature for a bill that later became law that added an annual state stipend for NBCTs in Montana. His work in education varies from within his district to statewide policy, serving both on the district Ongoing Negotiations Committee and as Chair of the Certification Standards and Practices Advisory Council for the Montana Board of Public Education. As the 2017 Montana Teacher of the Year, Elder began advocating for increased equity in learning and working toward recruiting and retaining quality educators in his state. As such, he is involved with the Montana chapter of Educators Rising and has mentored and conducted seminars with undergraduate education majors on multiple campuses around the state. He was also selected as one of five teachers of the year to represent U.S. educators on a weeklong-investigation of Finland’s Educational System in 2017 and did much the same in South Africa as a 2018 NEA Foundation Fellow in 2018.

Student Council has been a cornerstone of Mr. Elder’s extracurricular involvement with student leaders. He serves as the state’s Associate Director and was awarded the 2017 Region VII Mid-Level Student Council Advisor of the Year by the National Association of Secondary School Principals. Elder stays active with his students. He is a Helena Dynamos Youth Mountain Biking Club ride leader. Since 2013, he has led student groups from his middle school on a biennial international experience to Central America (Costa Rica, Panama, Belize, and Guatemala over the years), and has traveled extensively around the world on his own, including a semester sabbatical that took him through a number of countries in South America in 2012. He also spent five weeks in Thailand and Myanmar studying education and native peoples on a Fulbright Cultural Seminar in 2001. He currently serves on the ASCD Global Educators Advisory Council, working to integrate elements like the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into American students’ curricula.

Tan-A Hoffman, NBCT

Tan-A Hoffman, NBCT

JKL Bahweting Anishnabe SchoolMichigan

Tan-A Hoffman, NBCT

JKL Bahweting Anishnabe SchoolMichigan

Tan-A Hoffman is a 2nd-grade, National Board Certified Teacher, in the Upper Peninsula (U.P.) of Michigan at JKL Bahweting Anishnabe PSA, and a citizen of the Little Traverse Bay Band of Odawa Indians. She enjoys collaborating with others to promote equitable change in education for educators and students. She is a 2020 Michigan Regional Teacher of the Year and a board member of the National Board for ProfessionalTeaching Standards. You can find her on TV as a Detroit Learning Channel’s 3rd-grade teacher for their PBS literacy program, Read Write ROAR. She earned her BA in Elementary Education and MA in Curriculum and Instruction from Lake Superior State University and is currently enrolled at Northern Michigan University with the goal of attaining an Education Specialist Certification focusing on Native American Education.

Terry Holliday

Terry Holliday

Board Chair

Terry Holliday

Board Chair

Terry Holliday is the board chairman of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. He comes to the National Board with more than 40 years of classroom teaching and education leadership in district, state and national roles.

Most recently, Dr. Holliday served as the fifth Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Education from 2009 through 2015. While leading the Kentucky schools, Dr. Holliday introduced innovative programs, led high student performance and brought national recognition to the state for its education improvement efforts.

During his time serving the State of Kentucky, Dr. Holliday also held leadership roles for national organizations. In December 2010, he was named to the board of directors for the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). CCSSO is a nonpartisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity and five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions.

In September 2011, Dr. Holliday was appointed to serve a four-year term on the National Assessment Governing Board. The board sets policy for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), known as the Nation’s Report Card. In June 2013, Dr. Holliday was appointed to serve a three-year term on the Board of Overseers of the Baldridge Performance Excellence Program. The Board of Overseers, which consists of distinguished leaders from all sectors of the U.S. economy, is appointed by the Secretary of Commerce to advise the Department of Commerce on the Baldrige Program.

Before his role in Kentucky, Dr. Holliday previously served as superintendent of the 20,000-student Iredell-Statesville school district, where he earned the 2009 North Carolina Superintendent of the Year Award as well as the 2008 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, which was created by an act of Congress in 1987 to recognize organizations with long-term improvement in quality and productivity. Dr. Holliday has held many positions in school systems since 1972, including director of accountability, school principal, and band director. He has also served on numerous committees and boards on a local and national level, including the Governor’s Task Force for Transforming Education in Kentucky.

Dr. Holliday earned a bachelor’s degree from Furman University, a master’s degree and education specialist degree from Winthrop University, and a doctorate from the University of South Carolina.

A native of Belton, South Carolina, Dr. Holliday and his wife, Denise, are the parents of two children.

Tonia Holmes-Sutton, NBCT

Tonia Holmes-Sutton, NBCT

Public Education FoundationLas Vegas, NV

Tonia Holmes-Sutton, NBCT

Public Education FoundationLas Vegas, NV

Tonia Holmes-Sutton, Ed.D. is leading the way in education advocacy in southern Nevada. Tonia is a National Board Certified Teacher (Early Childhood Generalist) serving children, families, and educators across the country. Her primary service and support has been to children and families of high-needs communities within the Las Vegas Valley. Holmes-Sutton presently serves as the Nevada State Director for Teach Plus leading teachers in leadership in policy and advocacy.

Holmes-Sutton served as a former Governor-appointed member on the Nevada State Board of Education. In addition to serving as a Board Director for WestEd, she is also a member of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Board of Directors and a founding member of the National Network of Accomplished Minoritized Educators. Tonia is committed to excellence in service through education; continuing a family legacy that dates back to the late 1800s when her family established the first school for Blacks in Shelby County School District, Tennessee.

A passionate and committed educational advocate, Tonia is a proponent of professional learning communities, and teaching and family partnerships; advocating for families to engage as full partners in their children’s education to increase student learning and achievement. She has participated in professional staff development as a national consultant and as a presenter at district, state, and national conferences.

Tonia earned her Master’s Degree in Special Education in 2004 and her doctorate in Educational Leadership in 2012 from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). She was recently recognized as the 2020 Alumna of the Year for the UNLV College of Education.

As a military dependent, Tonia has lived in several states throughout the country, as well as overseas. She has made Las Vegas, Nevada home with her husband, Walter, and their daughter Brittany Danielle. Tonia also has six ‘forever’ children that she has cared for throughout recent years who reside in Nevada, Germany, Spain, and Serbia.

Mae Jemison

Mae Jemison

Founder, The Jemison Group, Inc. former NASA astronaut

Mae Jemison

Founder, The Jemison Group, Inc. former NASA astronaut

Dr. Mae C. Jemison is currently leading 100 Year Starship (100YSS) an initiative seed funded by DOD’s Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) to assure the capability for human interstellar space travel to another star is possible within the next 100 years. She also is founder of the technology consulting firm, The Jemison Group, Inc. that integrates the critical impact of socio-cultural issues when designing and implementing technologies, such as their projects on using satellite technology for health care delivery in West Africa and solar dish Stirling engines for electricity generation in developing countries.

Dr. Jemison, the first woman of color in the world to go into space, served six years as a NASA astronaut. She flew aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour, STS-47 Spacelab J(apan) mission in September 1992 and was NASA’s first Science Mission Specialist performing experiments in material science, life science and human adaptation to weightlessness.

Started after she left NASA, The Jemison Group also explores and develops stand-alone science and technology programs and companies. BioSentient Corporation, a medical technology devices and services company focused on improving health and human performance through physiologic awareness and self-regulation is such a company.

A strong, committed global voice for science literacy, in 1994 Jemison founded the international science camp The Earth We Share™ (TEWS) for students 12-16 years old from around the world, and founded and chairs the Dorothy Jemison Foundation for Excellence, a 501(c)3. TEWS-Space Race launched summer 2011 to improve science achievement in Los Angeles area students underserved and underrepresented in the sciences. Over four years its goal is to directly impact up to 10,000 middle school students and train 600 teachers. In October 2006 the Foundation developed the program Reality Leads Fantasy—Celebrating Women of Color in Flight that highlighted women in aviation and space from around the world. Dr. Jemison serves as national advocate for Bayer Corporation’s award winning Making Science Make Sense program.

An environmental studies professor at Dartmouth College, Jemison taught sustainable development and technology design and ran The Jemison Institute for Advancing Technologies in Developing Countries. She was an A.D. White Professor-at-Large at Cornell University.

Dr. Jemison is a member of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine and is: on the Board of Directors of Kimberly-Clark Corp., Scholastic, Inc. and Valspar Corp.; a Trustee of Morehouse College; Board of Texas Medical Center; and served as Chair, Texas State Product Development and Small Business Incubator Board; Chair, Greater Houston Partnership Disaster Planning and Recovery Task Force; a member Board of National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering. Dr. Jemison is an inductee of National Women’s Hall of Fame, National Medical Association Hall of Fame and Texas Science Hall of Fame. Among many honors, awards and honorary degrees she received the National Organization for Women’s Intrepid Award, the Kilby Science Award and in 1999 was selected as one of the top seven women leaders in a presidential ballot national straw poll

Prior to NASA, Jemison was Area Peace Corps Medical Officer for Sierra Leone and Liberia for two and a half years overseeing the healthcare system for Peace Corps (and State Department in Sierra Leone). Throughout Jemison has worked internationally including in a Cambodian refugee camp and with the Flying Doctors of East Africa. A general practice doctor in Los Angeles, Jemison earned a B.S. degree in chemical engineering and the requirements for an A.B. degree in African and Afro-American Studies at Stanford University and her M.D. from Cornell University.

Dr. Jemison is a highly sought after speaker on issues of health care, social responsibility, technology and motivation and has provided commentary for the BBC, McNeil Lehrer Report, ABC Nightline, NPR and CNN. In Find Where the Wind Goes, she writes for teenagers about growing up on the south side of Chicago, cultivating her aspiration to be a scientist, experiences as a medical student in Africa and her history-making journey into space. She appeared on an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, hosted the Discovery Channel’s series World of Wonder and was chosen one of People Magazine’s “World’s 50 Most Beautiful People” in 1993. Dr. Jemison resides in Houston and loves cats.

Dat Le, NBCT

Dat Le, NBCT

Arlington Public SchoolsArlington, VA

Dat Le, NBCT

Arlington Public SchoolsArlington, VA

Dat Le is the Science Supervisor for Arlington Public Schools. In this position, he is responsible for the management and coordination of the K-12 science program serving over 26,000 students. Prior to this position, Dat taught biology and environmental science for middle and high school students. During his teaching career, Dat has received several teaching awards, including the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching (PAEMST).

Dat has served on numerous standards committees at the district, state and national level. This includes serving on the Virginia Standards of Learning Assessment Science Content Review Committee. He also served on the Science Standards Advisory Committee for the College Board which created the Science College Board Standards for College Success, 2009 edition. In 2012, Dat served as the co-chair for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Science Committee which developed the National Board Science Standards, Third Edition. In 2015, Dat served on the committee responsible for updating What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do, second edition. Most recently, Dat served on the standards committee that created the Educators Rising Standards, 2016 edition.

Dat has been an adjunct faculty member at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, where he has taught graduate level research and statistics courses for the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. He is also a member of the Virginia Science Education Leadership Association and serves on the executive board. In addition to being a reviewer for several textbook publishers, Dat has also led national workshops and presentations on the teaching and learning of science.

Dat has a B.S. in Biology from the University of Mary Washington, an M.Ed. in Administration and Supervision from Virginia Commonwealth University, and a Ph.D. in Educational Research and Evaluation from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. He is also a National Board Certified Teacher.

Doug Lea, NBCT

Doug Lea, NBCT

Elementary Band DirectorColumbia, Maryland

Doug Lea, NBCT

Elementary Band DirectorColumbia, Maryland

Doug Lea, NBCT, is an elementary school band director in his hometown of Columbia, Maryland with more than 25 years’ experience in public school classrooms. He has taught, coached, or mentored students of virtually all ages and ability levels. His undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan in Music Education was followed by an MS in Counseling and a post-graduate certificate in School Administration, both from the Johns Hopkins University. He holds a K-12 teaching certificate in Maryland with endorsements in music, counseling, and administration.

As a National Board Certification Candidate Support Provider and NBCT Program Ambassador for National University’s P20 Leadership Center, Lea leads groups of teachers through both the National Board process and NU’s Master of Arts in Teaching program. He has also served as an assessor and a consultant for the National Board.

Lea was the 2010-2011 Teaching Fellow for the National Education Association (NEA) where he worked on education policy as it relates to teacher quality. Through various roles at the NEA, including serving as a Board Member and Chair of the Professional Standards and Practice Committee, he has continued to promote teacher leadership in education policy. Lea currently serves as Vice Chair of the Howard County Commission on Disability Issues and Vice President of the Howard County Education Association. 

Toni M. Poling, NBCT

Toni M. Poling, NBCT

Assistant Professor of EducationFairmont, WV

Toni M. Poling, NBCT

Assistant Professor of EducationFairmont, WV

Toni M. Poling is an award-winning English teacher from north-central West Virginia. She graduated cum laude from West Virginia University’s 5-Year Teacher Education Program, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a Master of Arts degree in Secondary Education.

Mrs. Poling taught ELA in a comprehensive public high school from 2004-2020. Since 2020, Mrs. Poling has been part of the faculty at Fairmont State University and serves as the Education Department Chair. Mrs. Poling achieved her National Board Certification (ELA/AYA) in 2013; in 2016 she earned her certification in Public School Administration. Currently, she is pursuing an Education Doctorate in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment.

In 2016, Toni M. Poling was awarded the Fairmont State University Professional Development School Partnership Excellence in Teaching Award and is a 2018 recipient of the NEA Foundation Excellence in Education Award winner. In 2017 Mrs. Poling was honored to serve as the West Virginia State Teacher of the Year and spent her year of service advocating for public education in the Mountain State. In the time since Mrs. Poling has continued to work with students, teachers, and teacher candidates to improve education in Appalachia.

Renée Middleton

Renée Middleton

Council Co-Chair, Dean The Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education, College of Education at Ohio University

Renée Middleton

Council Co-Chair, Dean The Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education, College of Education at Ohio University

A member of the NBPTS Board of Directors since November 2013, Dr. Middleton formerly served as Dean of The Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education at Ohio University (August 2006 – June 2021). Possessing more than 30 years of research experience with topics including racial identity development, multicultural counseling competency, disability policy issues, education & workforce diversity, and mentoring, Dr. Middleton currently serves as a Senior Consultant with the Arredondo Advisory Group www.arredondoadvisorygroup.com. AAG provides insight and consultation for successful and sustainable organizational diversity strategy. Dr. Middleton’s professional identity is counselor education, as such, also serves as a full professor in the department of Counseling and Higher Education at Ohio University.

She has decades of experience teaching courses such as Multicultural Issues in Counseling, Counseling Theory & Practice, Counseling and Human Services, Writing for Research and Publication in Counseling, and Speech and Hearing core courses. She received her bachelor’s degree in Speech and Hearing with a minor in Behavioral Sciences from Andrews University in 1981. She received her master’s degree in Clinical Audiology with a minor in Speech Pathology and Behavioral Sciences from The University of Tennessee in 1983. She received her doctoral degree from Auburn University in 1990, with a focus on Rehabilitation Administration.

She has decades of experience with leadership and providing consultation in a variety of areas to include: working with public schools in strategic planning for equitable school funding in concert with the Coalition of Rural and Appalachian Schools (CORAS), diversity and rehabilitation counseling and multicultural diversity, within the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services, the National Institute for Disability and Rehabilitation Research, the Food & Drug Administration-Center for Devices & Radiological Health and the Alabama Board of Examiners in Counseling working on Ethics/Consumer Protection.

Dr. Middleton has also served as an elected Board Member and Board Chair of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE, 2017), and as an Executive Committee member at-large with the Council of Academic Deans from Research Education Institutes (CADREI, 2013 – 2017). She is the recipient of the 2017 Jason Kinsey Friend of NAPDS Award (National Association for Professional Development Schools) as well as the 2017 recipient of the Edward C. Pomeroy Award for Outstanding Contributions to Teacher Education by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE).

Shelly Moore Krajacic, NBCT

Shelly Moore Krajacic, NBCT

NEA Executive CommitteeWisconsin

Shelly Moore Krajacic, NBCT

NEA Executive CommitteeWisconsin

Shelly Moore Krajacic, a high school English and drama teacher from Kenosha, Wisconsin, previously served on the National Education Association’s (NEA) Executive Committee.

Shelly is a third-generation Wisconsin educator with over twenty years of classroom experience, a National Board Certified Teacher, and a 2012 recipient of the Kohl Award for Excellence in Teaching. Prior to her election to NEA’s Executive Committee, Shelly served in numerous national, state, and local leadership capacities within the union. She was also a candidate for the Wisconsin state senate in 2011.

Shelly earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, a master’s degree in English Education from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls where she previously served as an adjunct instructor and is in progress on her doctorate in Urban Education at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where she serves as a lecturer.

Kareem Neal

Kareem Neal

Special Education TeacherPhoenix, AZ

Kareem Neal

Special Education TeacherPhoenix, AZ

Kareem Neal is a self-contained special education teacher in Phoenix, AZ. He has taught students with cognitive delays for 23 years. He is the recipient of the 2019 Arizona Teacher of the Year award, and was recently awarded an honorary doctorate from Northern Arizona University for his contributions to special education in Arizona. He is also a 2019-2021 Understood Teacher Fellow.

Kareem’s passion is connecting all students in schools, springing from his awareness that students with cognitive delays did not truly feel like members of their school communities. This led him to evaluate his own educational journey and how students in black communities often did not feel like education spaces were for them. He is now a restorative justice trainer for the Phoenix Union High School District. He focuses on building community through eliminating bias that comes from lack of connection with people who are different from each other. This work has led him to winning the Arizona Education Association’s Diversity Grant and the Maryvale Revitalization Committee’s Educator Excellence Award, and being named vice president of the Phoenix Union High School District’s Black Alliance.

Kareem’s academic journey was filled with adults who let him know that he was capable, which he attributes to being a lifetime learner. Too many students aren’t afforded that same opportunity, and Kareem is working tirelessly to change that.

Gavin Payne

Gavin Payne

GPC Advisors, LLCDavis, CA

Gavin Payne

GPC Advisors, LLCDavis, CA

Gavin Payne works with major national foundations, policy institutes, non-profits,and collaboratives, in efforts to embrace state and district improvement, high expectations with strong accountability, systems transformation, high-quality data transparency, and public engagement strategies.

He served for three years as the Director of Policy, Advocacy, & Communications for the U.S. at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he strove toimprove state and national education systems over the entire spectrum of preschool-through-college.

Previously, he served for over two decades in California as its Chief Deputy Superintendent of Public Instruction and as a Chief of Staff in the state Senate.

Mr. Payne currently sits on the Board of Directors for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and has served stints on the Boards of the California Teachers Retirement System, the Newt Elder Education Foundation, WestEd, and Heath House.

David Pickler

David Pickler

Pickler Wealth AdvisorsCollierville, TN

David Pickler

Pickler Wealth AdvisorsCollierville, TN

David A. Pickler is President and CEO of Pickler Wealth Advisors and Senior Partner at The Pickler Law Firm and Pickler Accounting Advisors in Collierville, Tennessee.

In 2015, David was named to the Financial Times 400 Top Financial Advisors list and is cited twice by Barron’s as among the top advisors in the state of Tennessee. He was a 2011 recipient of the Altruism Award in Registered Rep magazine and has been named a Five Star Wealth Manager every year since 2012.

David was a member of the first elected Shelby County Board of Education, having been elected in 1998. He served on the Board for 16 years and was the School Board Chairman for 12 years, from 1999-2011. David also served as President of the Tennessee School Boards Association, and in 2013 became the President of the National School Boards Association. Upon his retirement from elected office, David founded the American Public Education Foundation which was created to support civic engagement, character development and global citizenship among K-12 youth.

Becky Pringle

Becky Pringle

President, National Education AssociationWashington, DC

Becky Pringle

President, National Education AssociationWashington, DC

NEA president Becky Pringle is a fierce social justice warrior, defender of educator rights, an unrelenting advocate for all students and communities of color, and a valued and respected voice in the education arena. A middle school science teacher with 31 years of classroom experience, Becky is singularly focused on using her intellect, passion, and purpose to unite the members of the largest labor union with the entire nation, and using that collective power to fulfill the promise of public education.

Although she often describes herself as “just a Black girl from North Philly,” Becky is a strategic, dedicated and tireless union leader who is—at her core—an educator who has been and continues to be motivated by what is best for students. Her passion for students and educators, combined with her first-hand classroom experience, equip her to lead the movement to reclaim public education as a common good. Becky was elected in 2020 as COVID-19 ravaged Black, Brown, and indigenous communities nationwide. When the pandemic shuttered the nation’s schools, Becky helped to focus the nation’s attention on ways in which the crisis laid bare and exacerbated inequities that have for generations existed in schools, colleges, and communities nationwide—inequities that Becky herself encountered as a student, and has fought against for her entire career as an educator. Yet, Becky isn’t merely focused on shining the light on these inequities, she has a sturdy track record built upon years of work that has focused on transforming public education into a racial and socially just and equitable system designed to prepare every student to succeed in a diverse and interdependent world.

Before assuming NEA’s top post, Becky served as NEA vice president and before that as NEA secretary-treasurer. She directed NEA’s work to combat institutional racism, and spotlight systemic patterns of racism and educational injustice that impact students. Under Becky’s guidance, NEA works to widen access and opportunity by demanding changes to policies, programs, and practices. The Association’s goal is to ensure the systemic, fair treatment of people of all races so that equitable opportunities and outcomes are within reach for every student. This is why Becky is a staunch advocate for students who have disabilities, identify as LGBTQ+, are immigrants, or English Language Learners.

Becky co-chaired NEA’s Task Force on School Discipline and the School to Prison Pipeline. In that role, she guided the development of a school-to-prison pipeline policy statement that calls attention to and compels NEA’s 3 million members to address the inequitable and unfair policies and practices that push many students out of public schools and into the criminal justice system. Through this work, NEA is challenging zero-tolerance discipline policies, increased police presence in classrooms, and rising class sizes.

Becky has also led NEA’s work to transform the education professions and improve student learning. Most notably, she led the work group that produced the Association’s groundbreaking “Policy Statement on Teacher Evaluation and Accountability”—NEA’s first broad endorsement of the need to develop a compelling vision of a system of accountability that relies on quality, capacity, and trust, and embraces inspiration, innovation, shared responsibility, investment, authentic assessment, and continuous improvement. This led to the development of two seminal frameworks, “Transforming Teaching: Connecting Professional Responsibility With Student Learning” and the “ Professional Growth Continuum for Education Support Professionals,” which focused on how we can improve educators’ professional practice to make an even greater impact on the health, safety, well-being, learning, and development of their students. Becky also led the Association’s development of a policy statement on Community Schools to guide NEA’s work to transform and create an educational system worthy of our students, their families, and our members.

Becky has a long and notable record of Association advocacy at the national, state, and local levels. She began her leadership journey as a local president, and then went on to serve on the Board of Directors for NEA and the Pennsylvania State Education Association. She also served two terms as a member of NEA’s Executive Committee where she distinguished herself as a thoughtful and passionate advocate for the nation’s public school educators and students. As NEA secretary-treasurer, Becky skillfully led the union through one of the worst economic periods in recent history. Her efforts enabled the Association to emerge on strong financial footing with more power to advance its mission.

The impact of Becky’s leadership is far reaching, and includes serving as finance chair of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards; treasurer of the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation; and on the Institute for Educational Leadership Task Force. She is a recipient of the National Peace Medal for Leader of Educational Excellence, a recipient of the Black Women’s Roundtable Education Innovation & Social Justice Leadership Award from the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation; the Woman of Power Award from the National Action Network; and she was named Community Woman of the Year by the American Association of University Women. She is also a lifetime member of the NAACP. Becky served with distinction on President Barack Obama’s Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans. Her work included addressing issues on teacher recruitment and retention, STEM access and opportunities, and college preparation and completion.

Those who know Becky best know that she is also a passionate Philadelphia Eagles fan, loves anything purple, and for two special someones holds the coveted title of “Best Nana B” in the world

David Quolke

David Quolke

Cleveland Teachers UnionCleveland, Ohio

David Quolke

Cleveland Teachers UnionCleveland, Ohio

David Quolke has been President of the Cleveland Teachers Union since 2008.  A graduate of Cleveland State University, David was an Orientation and Mobility Instructor working with blind and visually impaired students throughout the Cleveland Schools prior to being elected President.   Throughout his career, David has been a passionate advocate for students with disabilities.  He uses that same enthusiasm as an advocate for all children, educators, and public education.

Under his progressive leadership, the CTU has been at the forefront Statewide in developing a new Teacher Development and Evaluation System, taking the lead on implementing the new Common Core Standards, collaborating with the district and national partners to implement a strong Social and Emotional Learning curriculum.  Under his leadership, the CTU secured $300,000 from the AFT Innovative Fund to develop strong lesson plans tied to the new standards developed by Cleveland teachers and shared nationwide on “Share My Lesson”.    The recently concluded 2013 Collective Bargaining Agreement has been cited as a ground breaking contract focused on collaboration and including a new differentiated compensation system.  Although David’s tenure as president has been marked by unprecedented attacks on public education, public employees and especially educators, he has nonetheless been focused on solution-driven unionism and a passionate advocacy for his members and the children of Cleveland.

In addition to being President of the CTU, David is a Vice President of the American Federation of Teachers; past co-chair of Ohio 8, a coalition of the Superintendents and teacher Union Presidents in Ohio’s eight urban school districts; and serves on the Executive Board of the North Shore Federation of Labor and the Ohio AFL-CIO.

David is married to Lucy, and they have one daughter, Alexa (18).

Shannon Rasmussen, NBCT

Shannon Rasmussen, NBCT

MentorWashington

Shannon Rasmussen, NBCT

MentorWashington

Shannon Rasmussen has spent thirty-five years in our public schools as a middle school drama and English teacher, and now as a mentor for new middle school teachers in the Federal Way School District in Washington State. She earned her National Board certification in 2013 in Early Adolescence English Language Arts; Shannon is proud of her NBCT Entry Four, relating to contributions to the profession, as the majority of her entry centered on the impact her union work made on student learning.

Shannon has been involved in her education association in several capacities, including local president, bargaining chair, and currently president of the Puget Sound UniServ Council and vice-president of the National Council of Urban Education Associations. Regardless of the position in which she is working, Shannon strives to positively impact public education and children throughout the country.

The author of several books, including Super Sub (lesson plans for substitute teachers, co-written with her mother) and seven pictorial travel guides to Walt Disney World (FUNatic’s Guide to Walt Disney World), Shannon derives pleasure from writing and discussing topics from work within the classroom to politics to Disney World.

Shannon’s undergraduate degree in English, with a minor in Elementary Education, was earned at the University of Washington in 1985. Her Master’s degree in School Counseling came from Seattle Pacific University in 1990.

LaTonya Sibley, NBCT

LaTonya Sibley, NBCT

National Educational ConsultantMontgomery, AL

LaTonya Sibley, NBCT

National Educational ConsultantMontgomery, AL

Dr. LaTonya Barnes Sibley is a National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT), holding an early Childhood Generalist certificate. Dr. Sibley leads as an independent national educational consultant, focusing on influencing positive educational change and improving student achievement. She currently serves as a Professor of education at the Alabama State University and supports members of the Alabama EducationAssociation.

Dr. Sibley is an active member of several professional organizations, including serving as the 2021-2023 National President of Black Women Education Leaders, Inc. She also serves as a founding member and on the Board of Directors with the National Board Network of Accomplished Minoritized Educators (NB-NAME) and Alabama Alliance of Black School Educators (AL-ABSE). Dr. Sibley also serves on the Board of Directors with Liberty Learning Foundation and the Alabama Association for Middle-Level Education.

Dr. Sibley has served as early childhood, elementary, and middle school teacher, curriculum coach, testing and assessment coordinator, and state director. Dr. Sibley also served as the Alabama Site Director of the Network to Transform Teaching (NT3)with the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS). Under her NT3 leadership, Alabama experienced a 300% increase in the number of educators pursuing National Board certification, resulting in the ranking of Alabama as 10th in the nation for the number of NBCTs and National Board candidates during 2017-2018. She believes all students, no matter the zip code, deserve an accomplished teacher.

Dr. Sibley is proud to serve on the Board of Directors for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS). Connect with her on social media at @DrLaTonyaSibley.

Juliana Urtubey, NBCT

Juliana Urtubey, NBCT

Educator and AdvocateLas Vegas, NV

Juliana Urtubey, NBCT

Educator and AdvocateLas Vegas, NV

Juliana Urtubey, NBCT, a first-generation, bilingual immigrant, loved school. Drawn to teaching through a high school teacher leadership academy, she knew it would be important to be a bilingual teacher. Now the 2021 National Teacher of the Year, Juliana works to serve as a mirror for her school community, helping students to be proud of their identities and their families, and to acknowledge their strengths and contributions to the community.

Juliana, currently in her 11th year in the classroom, teaches at Kermit R. Booker, Sr. Innovative Elementary School in Las Vegas, where she serves as a co-teacher in pre-kindergarten through fifth-grade special education settings and as an instructional strategist developing supports to meet students’ differing academic, social-emotional, and behavioral needs.

Known as “Ms. Earth” for her efforts to beautify schools and unify the community through murals and gardens, Urtubey has helped raise funds for garden programs at two Las Vegas schools. In one program, the garden was tended to by the student “Garden Gnomies” club and offered opportunities for innovative student learning and intergenerational learning and connections to the wider community, who could purchase produce on an as-able donation basis or with volunteer hours.

As National Teacher of the Year, Juliana plans to advocate for a “joyful and just education” for all students, one that is inclusive and celebratory of all students’ identities, families, and communities. Urtubey is the first Latinx National Teacher of the Year since at least 2005.

Juliana is a National Board Certified Teacher and holds a bachelor’s degree in bilingual elementary education and a master’s degree in special bilingual education from the University of Arizona. She is a National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Board of Directors member and Teacher Fellow, a Nevada Teach Plus Senior Policy Fellow, and an Understood Teacher Fellow and mentor. She is also a winner of the 2018 Rogers Foundation Heart of Education award

Jose Vilson, NBCT

Jose Vilson, NBCT

Educator, Writer, Speaker, and ActivistNew York City

Jose Vilson, NBCT

Educator, Writer, Speaker, and ActivistNew York City

José Luis Vilson is a veteran educator, writer, speaker, and activist in New York City, NY. He is the author of This Is Not A Test: A New Narrative on Race, Class, and Education. has spoken about education, math, and race for a number of organizations and publications, including the New York Times, The Guardian, TED, El Diario / La Prensa and The Atlantic. He’s a National Board Certified teacher, a Math for America Master Teacher, and the executive director of EduColor, an organization dedicated to race and social justice issues in education. He is also currently a doctoral student focusing on sociology and education at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Randi Weingarten

Randi Weingarten

American Federation of TeachersNew York, NY

Randi Weingarten

American Federation of TeachersNew York, NY

RANDI WEINGARTEN is president of the American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO, a union of 1.7 million teachers; paraprofessionals and school-related personnel; higher education faculty and staff; nurses and other healthcare professionals; local, state, and federal government employees; and early childhood educators. The AFT is dedicated to the belief that every person in America deserves the freedom to thrive, fueled by opportunity, justice, and a voice in our democracy.

Prior to her election as AFT president in 2008, Weingarten served for 11 years as president of the United Federation of Teachers, AFT Local 2, representing approximately 200,000 educators in the New York City public school system, as well as home child care providers and other workers in health, law, and education. Weingarten taught history at Clara Barton High School in Brooklyn’s Crown Heights neighborhood from 1991 to 1997 and helped her students win several state and national awards debating constitutional issues.

Weingarten was included in Washingtonian’s 2021 Washington’s Most Influential People, and in 2013, the New York Observer named Weingarten one of the most influential New Yorkers of the past 25 years.

Weingarten holds degrees from Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations and the Cardozo School of Law. She worked as a lawyer for the Wall Street firm of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan from 1983 to 1986. She is an active member of the Democratic National Committee and numerous professional, civic, religious, and philanthropic organizations. Born in 1957 and raised in Rockland County, N.Y., Weingarten now resides in the Inwood neighborhood of New York City.