On November 25, 2008, the Obama-Biden Transition team announced the selection of Dr. John H. Jackson, President and CEO of The Schott Foundation for Public Education, to serve on the President-elect's 13-member Education Policy Working Group, a part of the Presidential Transition Project.
The focus of the Transition Project's Policy Working Groups will be to develop the priority policy proposals and plans from the Obama campaign for action during the Obama-Biden Administration. The Education Policy Working Group consists of some of the nation's leading education experts, who are advising President-elect Obama on fulfilling his commitment to invest in early childhood education; recruit, train, retain, and reward an army of new teachers; create school designs for the 21st century; and make higher education affordable for all, among other important education initiatives.
As President and CEO of The Schott Foundation, Dr. Jackson directs the foundation's operations and philanthropic strategy to promote advocacy and public policy reforms in education. The Schott Foundation is the recipient of the 2007 Council on Foundations' Critical Impact Award for its strategic grantmaking around fiscal equity. Dr. Jackson formerly served in the Clinton Administration as Senior Policy Advisor for Civil Rights Policy in the U.S. Department of Education. He also previously served as Chief Policy Officer and National Director of Education for the NAACP, as well as an Adjunct Professor of Race and Gender Law and Public Policy at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute. Dr. Jackson possesses a Bachelor's degree from Xavier University of Louisiana, a Master of Education in Education Policy from the University of Illinois' College of Education, a Juris Doctorate from the University of Illinois College of Law, and a Master of Education and Doctorate of Education in Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
"We are thrilled and honored that Dr. Jackson has been selected to play such a pivotal role in shaping President-elect Obama's public education agenda and priorities. With Dr. Linda Darling Hammond's leadership and Dr. Jackson as a member of this key transition team, we are confident that the team will provide the key insights needed to ensure that the new administration's education policy pursues high quality public education for all U.S. children," said Greg Jobin-Leeds, Chair of Schott's Board of Directors.
President-elect Obama appointed Dr. Darling-Hammond to serve as the Director of the Education Policy Working Group. She is the Charles E. Ducommun Professor at Stanford University and Founder of both the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education and the School Redesign Network. Dr. Darling-Hammond is Founding Director of the National Commission for Teaching and America's Future. Her research, teaching, and policy work focus on issues of school reform, teaching quality, and educational equity.
The Schott Foundation also highlights the selection of Geri D. Palast as a member of the Education Policy Working Group. Palast is the Executive Director for one of the Schott Foundation's lead grantee organizations, the Campaign for Fiscal Equity (CFE). CFE is one of the leading education reform organizations in New York State. Previously, Ms. Palast has served as Assistant Secretary of Labor for Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs under President Clinton, and national Political and Legislative Director of the Service Employees International Union. She is also the Founder (and former Executive Director) of the Justice at Stake Campaign, the national organization working to ensure fair and impartial courts.
The other members selected to serve on the Education Policy Working Group include: Ian Bassin, Jeanne Century, Robert Gordon, Kris D. Gutierrez, David L. Kirp, Goodwin Liu, Gov. Ray Mabus, Steve Robinson, Bob Shireman, and John Vaupel.