PIE Network Leadership Institute
Cohort of State & National Leaders
The Leadership Institute is a cohort-based, year long leadership opportunity focused on leading change in complex, political climates. It is by far PIE Network’s most highly-rated opportunity, according to peers that have experienced it so far.
“The Leadership Institute pushes leadership beyond what business school case studies tell you and beyond what is traditionally done in education advocacy organizations.”
Additional details about the program, previous cohorts, and the application process are below. Please reach out to Jen if you have additional questions.
“I highly recommend this to any leader who is eager for more learning, collaboration, and space to reflect and take care of yourself as a leader, manager, and human being.”
Learn More About Leadership Institute
WHO PARTICIPATED IN THE FOURTH LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE COHORT?
- Dakarai Aarons, formerly with Data Quality Campaign, now Communications Manager, Education for Chan Zuckerberg Initiative
- Abena Agyemang, formerly with Families for Excellent Schools
- Atnre Alleyne, DelawareCAN, Executive Director
- Leann Arend, formerly with League of Education Voters
- Libuse Binder, Stand for Children Washington, Executive Director
- Rachel Wiggans Chan, Rodel Foundation of Delaware, Senior Program Officer
- Parasa Chanramy, Stand for Children Oregon, Policy & Advocacy Manager
- Jennifer Diaz, Foundation for Excellence in Education, Vice President of Communications
- Madaline Edison, Educators for Excellence-Minnesota, Executive Director
- Eric Lerum, America Succeeds, Vice President of Growth and Strategy
- Katie Linehan, formerly with Educate for Nebraska, now Deputy Communications Director, American Federation for Children
- Maya Martin, Parents Amplifying Voices in Education (PAVE), Executive Director
- Michael O’Sullivan, GeorgiaCAN, Executive Director
- Erin Prince, formerly with Chalkboard Project, now Consultant at Prince Catalyst Consulting
- Renisha Ricks, StudentsFirstNY, Director of Advocacy
- Ian Rosenblum, The Education Trust-New York, Executive Director
- Alyssa Schwenk, formerly with the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, now Development Director at Bellwether Education Partners
- Jessica Stewart, GO Public Schools, Oakland Executive Director
- Jen Walmer, Democrats for Education Reform Colorado, Executive Director
WHO PARTICIPATED IN THE THIRD LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE COHORT?
- Rachel Amankulor, PennCAN, Executive Director
- Sean Andersen, formerly with Families for Excellence Schools, now Founding Partner at P.A.C.E Education Strategies
- Madeline Bayard, Rodel Foundation of Delaware, VP Policy & Practice
- Catharine Bellinger, formerly with Democrats for Education Reform, now Vice President of Pubic Affairs and Advocacy at IDEA Public Schools
- Brigette Blom Ramsey, Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence, Executive Director
- Dale Chu, formerly with America Succeeds, now president, DC Strategies
- Peter Franzen, Children’s Education Alliance of Missouri, Associate Executive Director
- Jean Frickey Saito, formerly with Stand for Children Colorado, now Founder and CEO JFS Pubilc Affairs
- Claire Goebel, Wildflower Foundation, Partner
- Juan Gonzalez, formerly with Stand for Children Illinois, currently Pathways Director at Education Systems Center
- Erin Hart, Expect More Arizona, COO
- Tonia Holowetzki, formerly with Chalkboard Project, now Marketing Communications Director at the Oregon Business & Industry
- Sanford Johnson, Mississippi First, Deputy Director
- J. Alex Kelly, formerly with Foundation for Excellence in Education, now Chief of Staff at Florida Department of Education
- Hamada Labi, formerly with GeorgiaCAN, now with National Advocacy and Policy Counsel at the ACLU
- Sarah Lillis, formerly with EdVoice, now Executive Director, Teach Plus California
- Seth Litt, Parent Revolution, CEO
- Gina Mahony, formerly with National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, currently President and Founder at Domer Consulting
- Sean Matteson, formerly with ConnCAN
- Mary Cypress Metz, State Collaborative on Reforming Education, Vice President of Programs
- Jamie O’Leary, formerly with Thomas B. Fordham Institute-Ohio, now Associate Director of Policy at Crane Center for Early Childhood Research & Policy, Ohio State University
- David Powell, Stand for Children Washington, Government Affairs Director
WHO PARTICIPATED IN THE SECOND LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE COHORT?
- Chad Aldis, Thomas B. Fordham Institute-Ohio, Vice President for Ohio Policy and Advocacy
- Angela Bass, formerly with Mississippi First, now executive director at start-up organization focused on early childhood education in Mississippi
- Benjamin Boer, formerly with Advance Illinois, now independent consultant
- Jason Botel, formerly with MarylandCAN, appointed Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement at U.S. Department of Education in 2017, now Vice President for Corporate Development at Catapult Learning
- Maryellen Butke, formerly with Impact for Education, now Education Strategist and Consutlant at Namaste Consulting
- Courtney Criswell, The KIPP Foundation, Senior Director of Policy and Government Affairs
- Joanna Hassell, Foundation for Excellence in Education, National Director of Policy
- Stacey Hodge, Stand for Children Texas, Dallas Director
- Jason Hughes, formerly with Stand for Children Louisiana
- Lorna Kurdi, formerly with Children’s Education Alliance of Missouri, now Senior Consultant at Kurdi Consulting
- Jess Langhaim, Foundation for Excellence in Education, Vice President of Development
- Amy Liu, formerly with League of Education Voters, Senior Officer, Education/Workforce and Human Services Initiatives in Washington State for Microsoft Philanthropies
- Sydney Morris, Educators for Excellence, Co-founder & Co-CEO
- Eric Paisner, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, COO
- Jackney Prioly Joseph, Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education, Director, Career Readiness Initiatives
- Luke Ragland, formerly with Colorado Succeeds, now President of Ready Colorado
- Thomas Rains, A+ Education Partnership, Vice President of Operations and Policy
- Andrea Roethke, formerly with MinnCAN, now Managing Director of Strategy and Operations at EdAllies
- David Sailer, formerly with Families for Excellent Schools, now consultant at Clarion River
- Reshma Singh, formerly with Partnership for Educational Justice, now Founding Partner at P.A.C.E. Education Strategies
WHO PARTICIPATED IN THE FIRST LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE COHORT?
- Jennifer Alexander, PIE Network, Executive Director
- Raymond Allen, formerly with Stand for Children Louisiana, now Regional Director at Leadership for Educational Equity
- Priscilla Aquino Garza, Educate Texas, Deputy Director, Policy
- Chris Barron, formerly with Partnership for Learning, now Director of Communications & Media Relations at Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium
- Derrell Bradford, NYCAN & 50CAN, NYCAN Executive Director & 50CAN Executive Vice President
- Rachel Canter, Mississippi First, Executive Director
- Tania de Sa Campos, formerly with Democrats for Education Reform
- Sarah Grunewald, formerly with the Rodel Foundation Delaware, now Vice President of Community Engagement and Programs, Delaware Community Foundation
- Scott Laband, Colorado Succeeds, Executive Director
- David Mansouri, State Collaborative on Reforming Education, President
- Kelly McManus, formerly with Stand for Children Arizona, now director of higher education policy and advocacy, Laura and John Arnold Foundation
- Shree Medlock, formerly with the Black Alliance for Educational Options, now Vice President of Strategic Engagement, Texas Charter Schools Association
- Carrie Griffin Monica, Stand for Children Louisiana, Executive Director
- Jim O’Conner, Advance Illinois, Project Director
- Seth Rau, formerly with Nevada Succeeds, now Director of Legislative and Strategic Partnerships, San Antonio Independent School District
- Dana Rickman, Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education, Vice President,
- Mimi Rodman, Stand for Children Illinois, Executive Director
- Daniel Sellers, formerly with MinnCAN, now Executive Director, Ed Allies
- Sonja Semion, formerly with Stand for Children Colorado,
- Jason Williams, formerly with Stand for Children Massachusetts, now Vice President of District and School Partnerships, New Classrooms
What makes the Leadership Institute unique?
The Leadership Institute complements other Network opportunities (which tend to focus on policy topics in education) by reaching entirely outside of education for lessons from other sectors that sharpen advocacy strategy, pushing participants to think bigger about political influence.
Each of the three, three-day sessions provides a mix of case-based discussions of political campaigns, experiential learning opportunities, and connection to expertise related to the arts of influence and political strategy.
Past participants have reflected that the relationships built among their cohorts were as powerful as the content, and that they have created meaningful connections and lasting professional relationships that have extended well beyond the three meetings.
HOW CAN I PARTICIPATE?
Applications for a fifth cohort are currently being accepted. Please email Jen for more information.
WHO SHOULD PARTICIPATE?
The Leadership Institute is open to executive directors of PIE Network member and partner organizations, as well as individuals in strong “number two” positions. The experience is best suited for leaders who have distinguished expertise in advocacy, organizing, and policy in education, and are hungry for broader insights from other sectors that further sharpen their abilities as strategists and influencers. We seek a balance in each cohort across the different types of organizations and approaches to advocacy, considering the depth and complexity of experiences and perspectives applicants bring to the mix.
If there are more applicants than we can accommodate, we consider first the insights and qualifications put forth in potential participants’ applications. We also consider the balance noted above, as well as the potential ideological, gender, ethnic, and geographic diversity that a potential participant brings to the mix. (Note that organizations that have not yet participated are prioritized over those that have, if demand is high.) We also prioritize the participation of executive directors, but will ensure a mix of other roles in order to bring a range of perspectives. Finally, we seek evidence of an applicant’s commitment to being a leader within the broader Network in an ongoing way; leaders and organizations that consistently engage and actively participate in other PIE Network opportunities are considered some of the strongest applicants.
WHAT IS THE TIME COMMITMENT & COST?
Each cohort meets three times, for three days over a time period of 12 to 18 months.
All costs associated with the Institute (travel, hotel, etc.) will be covered by PIE Network, thanks to the generosity of our funding partners. Participants are expected to fully invest their time and energy in each meeting.
What are people saying about the experience?
“The Leadership Institute pushes leadership beyond what business school case studies tell you and beyond what is traditionally done in education advocacy organizations. I feel like I have a tool box of ideas for approaching challenges in new ways.”
“… for me it was the importance of taking the time to reflect and think about my own practice that was the most valuable.”
“I draw on our improv and negotiation skills weekly. … I do so many “tough” conversations differently because of this.”
“So much of this work is about relationships: I feel like I gained solid strategies and tactics for building bridges with folks.”
“100% leaving with these relationships that will make a difference and have made a difference in my work.”
“I have already approached working with my team and everyone in my organization differently, implementing “yes, and” in my conversations, using better negotiating tactics, changing “why” to “what” and so many other best practices I’ve learned in these meetings. The tools we learn have paid immediate dividends.”