Advisory Committee

CRTWC’s Advisory Committee is comprised of industry leaders in the educator preparation profession and their respective institutions, PK-12 school districts, and education excellence and reform organizations to provide thought partnership for our work.

David Adams
Director of Social Emotional Learning
Urban Assembly

David is the Chief Executive Officer of The Urban Assembly. He started with the UA in 2014 as the Director of Social-Emotional Learning, where he created the Resilient Scholars Program (RSP), a unique approach to integrating SEL into curriculum and classroom practices across the UA network. RSP has grown into a national program, serving schools and districts in Los Angeles, Houston, Syracuse, and other cities. As the Senior Director of Strategy, David led the expansion of the organization into a model provider of school support, with an emphasis on innovation and equity in public education. David sits on the board of CASEL and is an author of The Educator’s Practical Guide to Emotional Intelligence, and a co-author of the textbook, Challenges to Integrating Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Programs in Organizations. He is a Civil Affairs Officer in the Army Reserve and holds an M.Ed in Educational Psychology from Fordham University.

Ernest Black
Systemwide Director
CSU Office of the Chancellor

Ernest Black is the current Systemwide Director for the CalStateTEACH program. He earned his doctorate in education from the University of Southern California, master’s degree from National University and bachelors of arts degree from Western Michigan University. He has contributed to the development of programs and policy to increase the numbers of African American and Latino males into the teaching profession. He has participated in the Network Improvement Committee of AACTE on the topic. He is also involved with the Policy Committee of the California Council of Teacher Educators (CCTE). He is currently on the board of California Teacher Corps (CTC) and Center for Reaching and Teaching the Whole Child (CRWTC).

Dr. has spent over 20 years in education. He started as K-12 teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District. He has taught at both the elementary and high school levels in South Central Los Angeles. He progressed to higher education. He has also taught masters level classes at Chapman University and a doctorate level course at the University of Phoenix. He also provides professional development for educators striving to increase academic achievement for African American male students.

Suzanne Bouffard
Vice President, Publications
Editor, The Learning Professional
Learning Forward
The Professional Learning Association

Suzanne Bouffard is a researcher and writer with a Ph.D. in developmental psychology and a passion for making research accessible to educators and families. She is the author of the book, The Most Important Year: Pre-Kindergarten and the Future of Our Children (Avery, 2017) and has also co-written two books for educators: Teaching with a Social, Emotional, and Cultural Lens (Harvard Education Press, 2020) and Ready, Willing, and Able: A Developmental Approach to College Access and Success (Harvard Education Press, 2012). She has written about social, emotional, and academic development for The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Daily Beast, U.S. News and World Report, Parents, and PBS Kids for Parents. She has also published research and commentary on social and emotional learning in education outlets including Educational Leadership, the Harvard Education Letter, Kappan, and Social Policy Report. She is currently Vice President of Publications at Learning Forward and editor of The Learning Professional magazine. Previously, she was a researcher at the Harvard Graduate School of Education for ten years.

Ann McKay Bryson
Manager of SEL Professional Learning

Ann McKay Bryson serves as a CASEL district consultant working with the Oakland Unified School District in California and the Washoe County School District in Nevada. As an SEL professional learning specialist, her particular areas of focus include building and supporting trauma-Informed educational communities, expanding adult SEL development, and leveraging formative and summative assessments for developing student capacity.

In her 32 years with the Anchorage School District, Ann followed two decades as a classroom and special education teacher at both the elementary and secondary levels with 12 years of providing professional development for teachers, administrators, and school staffs. She collaboratively led ASD’s SEL standards-based assessment project and developed the professional learning support network that underpins the delivery of their evidence-based SEL program.

Ann designed and oversaw ASD’s multiyear research project on Second Order Change, partnering with the Cook Inlet Tribal Council, the Devereux Center for Resilient Children, the National Coalition Building Institute, and the American Institutes for Research, highlighting student academic and school community benefits resulting from a focus on adult SEL development.

Ann serves as an adjunct at University of Alaska, Anchorage, providing a wide array of courses including SEL Professional Inquiry, SEL-Based Principal Leadership, Mentoring and Induction, and Trauma-Aware Effective Teaching Practices. She served two terms as National Writing Project Board Chair for the Alaska State Writing Consortium. Ann co-facilitates SEL professional development nationally and has presented at national conferences, including the American Educational Research Association in 2008, 2010, and 2014.

Michael Gallagher
Sunnyvale School District

Michael Gallagher is Superintendent for the Sunnyvale School District and has served the public schools of Santa Clara County for more than thirty years as a high school teacher, counselor, and associate principal, as a middle school principal, and as a district-level leader.

Michael earned a Doctor of Education degree from San Francisco State University while focusing on describing and supporting effective teachers in high poverty schools.  He has played a leadership role in the District’s efforts to support the social, emotional, and cultural dimensions of teaching and learning for students, teachers, and staff.

He earned MA degrees in Counseling Education and Educational Administration and a BA degree in English, all from Santa Clara University.  He has served as Board President for Sunnyvale Community Services and as a board member for the Collaborative for Reaching and Teaching the Whole Child and for the Santa Clara County Schools Insurance Group.  He is an adjunct faculty member for San José State Educational Doctorate program and for Santa Clara University’s masters in educational administration program.

Melissa Meetze-Hall
Administrator, Center for Teacher Innovation
School of Education, Educational Services
Riverside County Office of Education


Chi Kim
Chief Executive Officer
Pure Edge, Inc.

Chi was named Chief Executive Officer of Pure Edge, Inc. in March 2018 after serving as Chief Strategy & Operations Officer since 2016. Prior to joining Pure Edge, Inc., she was a California school superintendent.  She also served as school principal, teacher, leadership coach and program officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She is co-founder of the Teaching Garden program that was adopted by the American Heart Association to support heart health through school gardens.

Chi is a 2018 Pahara-Aspen Education Fellow, serves as the Board Chair & Trustee of the Great Minds nonprofit board, a member of CASEL Board of Directors, and Coalition for Career Development Center.  She also sits on the advisory councils of SEL4USProject Wayfinder, Center for Reaching and Teaching the Whole Child, and Family Code Night / MV GATE. She earned a B.A. in Psychology and an M.Ed. from UCLA, a Tier I Administrative Services credential from California State University, Dominguez Hills, Tier II Administrative Services credential from Loyola Marymount University, XPT Performance Breathing Certification and Oxygen Advantage Functional Breathing Certification. She is mom to three wonderful girls and resides in the greater Boston area.

Ted Lempert
Children Now

Ted Lempert is the President of Children Now, a research and policy organization based in Oakland that is focused on transforming children’s advocacy. Children Now coordinates The Children’s Movement of California. Mr. Lempert is also a Lecturer in the Political Science Department at UC Berkeley. Previously, he was the founding CEO of EdVoice, a California education reform organization.

Mr. Lempert was a California State Assemblymember representing Silicon Valley from 1996 to 2000 and 1988 to 1992. He served as chair of the Assembly Higher Education Committee and co-chair of the Joint Committee to Develop a Master Plan for Education. He had more than 75 bills signed into law, including major policies in the areas of education, health care, children and families, tax policy and the environment.

Mr. Lempert also served on the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, where he was President of the Board in 1995. Prior to holding public office, Mr. Lempert was special counsel and an associate for the law firm of Sheppard, Mullin, Richter and Hampton in San Francisco.

Mr. Lempert received the “Al Rodda Lifetime Service Award” from the California School Boards Association; was named “Legislator of the Year” by numerous leading education groups, including the National Association of Educational Service Agencies, the California Association of School Administrators, California Community College Faculty and the UC and CSU Students Associations; and was recognized five times with the “High- Tech Legislator of the Year” award from the American Electronics Association.

Mr. Lempert graduated from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and earned his law degree from Stanford University. He and his wife Nicole have three daughters.

Jake Shuler
Consultant in Teacher Preparation
at State of California Commission on Teacher Credentialing

Jake’s work at the Commission is focused on working with Multiple Subject and Single Subject Teacher Preparation programs, CTE programs, and leading accreditation site visits. Jake started at the Commission in January 2017 after six years teaching high school and five years working as an attorney and legislative staffer in federal and state government.

Frederick Uy
Director, Educator Preparation
Co-Director, Center for the Advancement of Instruction in Quantitative Reasoning
Department of Educator Preparation & Public School Programs
CSU Office of the Chancellor

Dr. Fred Uy serves both as a Director in the Department of Educator Preparation and Public School Programs and Co-Director for the Center for the Advancement of Instruction in Quantitative Reasoning. Before joining the Office of the Chancellor, Dr. Uy was a Professor of Mathematics Education at Cal State LA and a K-12 mathematics teacher. In this position, he will be responsible in overseeing and increasing the capacity of the department to provide leadership and support to the educator preparation programs on campuses across the CSU. He has contributed to CSU initiatives in secondary school teacher mathematics preparation as a trainer for the EAP in Mathematics and as a leader in the CSU M-TEP. Dr. Uy also has served as a mathematics consultant for school districts and publishers and has conducted numerous professional development trainings in topics like mathematics pedagogy, teaching mathematics to ELs, assessments, Linked Learning, arts integration, and bilingual education.

Vicki Zakrzewski
Education Director
Greater Good Science Center
University of California, Berkeley

Vicki Zakrzewski (zahk-shef-skee), Ph.D., is the founding education director of the Greater Good Science Center. As an international thought leader on the science of well-being in education, Vicki writes articles (Greater Good, ASCD’s Educational Leadership, Edutopia, and Huffington Post), gives talks and workshops all over the world, and is the lead creator of Greater Good in Education, a free online resource for educators that offers research-based practices to use in the classroom and for their own well-being.

Vicki also sits on several advisory boards and consults and collaborates with organizations on how to incorporate the science of well-being into education. Sample collaborations include the EASEL Lab and Making Caring Common within the Harvard Graduate School of Education; CASEL’s California Collaborating States Initiative; the Learning and Policy Institute at Stanford University; UNESCO’s Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development; the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Facebook; Science for Monks and Nuns in Dharamsala, India; the Knowledge and Human Development Authority in Dubai, UAE; the Mind and Life Institute (of which she is a fellow); the Jim Henson Company on a new television show for preschoolers; the International School of Brussels on the Common Ground Collaborative curriculum; several social-emotional learning programs, including Second Step, MindUp, Open Circle, Facing History and Ourselves, and Inner Resilience; and Pixar/Disney on The Emotions Survival Guide—a follow-up book for children based on the movie Inside Out.

A former teacher and school leader, Vicki earned her Ph.D. in Education and Positive Psychology from Claremont Graduate University. In her doctoral research, Vicki spent two months in India at a school awarded the Peace Education Prize by UNESCO and the Hope of Humanity Award by the Dalai Lama, researching their methods for developing teachers’ ability to create caring relationships with students. When she’s not Greater Good’ing, you can find her exploring her love of India through cooking and Bollywood dancing, or sipping a cup of chai.