Nelson Broms, Chairman of the Board
Nelson Broms is a former Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Equitable Life Holding Corporation and served in several senior management capacities at The Equitable Life Assurance Society of the United States. Mr. Broms was instrumental in the formation and development of the managed health care and financial services sectors in the U.S. Additionally, he co-founded, serves or has served as the chairman of the board, member of the board, senior executive officer, senior strategic advisor to senior management, or partner at Financial Security Assurance Holdings Ltd., Clayton & Dubilier & Co., Contel, Inc., Preferred Health Care, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, Inc., Arizona State University, Columbia University, Alvarez & Marsal Public Sector Services, and Edison Learning, Inc. During World War II, Mr. Broms served with distinction in the United States Army as Assistant General Staff Officer in the Headquarters U.S. Third Army and in the Headquarters U.S. Ninth Army. He also served honorably in the Korean War.

Matt Chapman
President and CEO, Northwest Evaluation Association
Matt Chapman leads the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) in achieving its vision for kid-centric education based on comprehensive and accurate data.  Matt has combined business careers with a volunteer career focused on education. Matt co-founded a program for street youth that includes an award-winning alternative school. Matt served on the board of OMSI, focusing on its strategic plan and programs for distance learning in science. As a regent for the University of Portland, he also serves as a mentor for students in the entrepreneurship program.  Matt practiced law for 13 years, and then became CEO of CFI ProServices, Inc., a publicly traded company where he served for 13 years. CFI received recognition in local and national lists of rapidly growing companies, and was listed as one of the 100 best places to work in Oregon four years in a row.  Matt received a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Portland in 1971, and a J.D. from the University of Oregon Law School in 1974.

Tom McDowell
Tom McDowell has over 40 years of educational experience in both regular and special education. He has worked in both public and private education settings.  McDowell’s positions have included Teacher, Speech and Language Pathologist, Educational Diagnostician, Special Education Coordinator, Assistant Principal, Principal, Director, Executive Director and Educational Consultant to three major companies in the area of special education and students at risk.  He has published two Programs:  Language Development for Boys and Oral Language Communication for grades K-2 Standard American English and Reading. McDowell’s educational career has been centered on fostering learning for all students using strategies that reinforce strengths of students that are centered on the language and communication for success and achievement. McDowell has been honored by receiving three teacher of the year awards in three different states, Florida Educator of the Year Phi Beta Kappa, Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech and Hearing Association, Florida Advocate of the Year by the Council of Exceptional Children (CEC), Presidential Award Florida Association of Psychologists, Presidential Achievement Award Florida Association of Social Workers, Magna Award for outstanding ESE programming National School Board Association and Golden Honor from the National American Parents for Special Needs Students. McDowell is an active member of State and National organizations that support education.  He has served as president of:  the Council for Exceptional Children, Association of State Directors of Student Services, Florida Language and Speech Association, Florida Association of Administrators and Phi Beta Kappa educational Association.  He is a present member of OSEP Special programs supporting achievement in special needs students committee. McDowell holds three degrees:  Bachelor in Education, Master’s in Speech and Language Pathology and Educational Specialist in Educational Leadership.

Dr. Glenn “Max” McGee
President, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy®
Dr. Glenn “Max” McGee is recognized as a dynamic leader, teacher, speaker and writer on critical issues in educational leadership and legislation. He is President of the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, a residential academy that educates the top math and science students in Illinois and is active in statewide outreach programs. Dr. McGee is a former Illinois State Superintendent of Education, and has been a teacher, principal and superintendent to three Illinois public school districts. He is a past chairman and current member of the board of the Golden Apple Foundation. He also serves on the board of the Great Books Foundation, the Governor’s P-20 Council, the Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in Illinois Board, as well as the Museum of Science and Industry’s Advisory Council. Dr. McGee is a regular speaker at state and national conferences, has published several articles and coauthored two books, most recently The Perfect School. Dr. McGee’s published research on high achieving, high poverty schools that have closed the achievement gap has garnered state and national attention for identifying how schools and communities can help all students succeed. His mission is to make an enduring difference in the lives of all children and to share his passionate commitment and support with Illinois’ educational leaders.

Mary Stafford
Chief Operating Officer, Distinctive Schools
Mary Stafford’s career experience has spanned higher education, traditional K-12 public education, and charter schools.  She has a well-documented career of demonstrating powerful results over time in charter school settings. Mary’s most recent position involved managing educational partnerships in seven states ranging from charter school to traditional settings as well as drop-out recovery centers.  Schools she has most recently served are located in major urban settings including Detroit, Chicago, Indianapolis, Davenport, Milwaukee, Dayton, Cleveland, Columbus, Duluth, Peoria, Rockford, and St. Louis, serving in excess of 10,000 students. In this role she acted as the leader of achievement, client relations and operations for sites within the Midwest. The schools Stafford was responsible for are some of the most successful in the organization’s portfolio.  She consistently demonstrated results via dramatically improved test scores, high satisfaction among clients and long-term relationships.  Her region had a strong record of academic growth across the Midwest, with a range of student populations, including improved academic outcomes in schools where the majority students were members of historically underserved, minority communities and where a high percentage of students received free and reduced lunch. Stafford’s prior experience includes positions as Superintendent and Associate Superintendent, Dean in Higher Education, Human Resources and Organizational Development Consultant, Charter School founding Principal, instructor at the college level and teaching at the pre-school and kindergarten level. Her recognized strength’s include charter school start up and talent identification and development. Stafford has started a dozen charter schools in as many years. She has been at the forefront of the educational reform movement for over a decade.

David Sundstrom, J.D.
David Sundstrom is co-founder and President of Atlantic Research Partners.  Since 2007, he and his team of education specialists have provided leadership training for school district administrators and superintendents, assisted Human Resources departments on performance audit and recruitment and retention strategies, and assisted school boards in the drafting of policies governing the multiple and nuanced issues affecting preK-12 education.   An attorney specializing in contract and education law, Sundstrom has served as counsel to school district leaders and school district boards.  He began his career in education in 1977 at Michigan’s Hawthorn Center, then a state hospital for severely disturbed children and adolescents in Northville, Michigan.  For a period of years he additionally served as an elementary school teacher in rural Parker Corners, Michigan, and acknowledges that his years in both special education and general education settings have had a profound effect on his subsequent work as an attorney.   Between 1990 and 1999, he taught senior-level courses in Business Law at Michigan State University, and courses in Trial Advocacy and Law Practice at the Thomas M. Cooley Law School. Sundstrom began his practice of law at Gandelot, Stoepker and Dickson in Detroit in 1985, focusing on contract negotiation and litigation.  Over years his practice grew to encompass employment and civil rights issues, employment protocol design and implementation, and contractual and labor dispute-resolution.  He subsequently assumed the duties of Chief Corporate Officer for one of North America’s largest providers of administrative software and services in the PreK-12 educational market.  In addition to his work for private organizations, he has served in school leadership roles that included the role of Chief of Staff and Interim Superintendent in Wilmington DE, and Chief of Staff for the nation’s 20th largest urban school district: Duval County Public Schools in Jacksonville FL.  David Sundstrom is co-author of two textbooks:  Power of Teaching—The Science of the Art (1st Edition 2002; 2nd Edition, 2007) and Power of Coaching—Teachers and Teaching (2009)

Dr. Brenda Tanner
Dr. Tanner serves as Chief Academic Officer of Atlantic Research Partners and has served for more than 30 years in education in Virginia and South Carolina, serving as a superintendent, school district and division administrator, staff developer, teacher, and assistant professor. She has recently retired from her position as Superintendent of Schools in Madison County, a small rural division in Virginia. Prior to arriving in Madison, VA she served as Chief Academic and Chief Personnel Officer for Horry County Public Schools in South Carolina, a district with 31,000 students and 4,000 employees. The majority of Dr. Tanner’s career has been in preK-12 systems; however, she has also worked at the college level, teaching in the area of leadership and school administration at the University of Virginia. While there, she directed a professional development consortium, working with the Curry School of Education and twenty Virginia school divisions to provide support for teachers and school administrators. Dr. Tanner earned a bachelor’s in Elementary Education from Lynchburg College, a master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Virginia, and a doctorate from the University of Virginia. She has written, consulted, and presented on a wide range of educational topics, including block scheduling, performance standards, curriculum, instructional strategies, and school leadership.

Dr. Anne J. Udall
Vice President of Professional Development, NWEA
Dr. Anne Udall has completed more than twenty years of service in K-12 public education. She has served as an instructional aide, teacher, staff developer, program director and an assistant superintendent with leadership responsibilities for major curriculum, instruction and professional development initiatives. Throughout the 1980s, Dr. Udall taught in an elementary resource program for learning disabled and gifted students with the Tucson, Arizona Unified School District, and provided district-wide training in higher-level thinking skills. In the 1990s she served in numerous leadership positions for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, the largest school system in North Carolina, including as Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction. She has published numerous articles and has co-authored Creating the Thoughtful Classroom.  She is an accomplished keynote speaker and presenter. Prior to joining Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) in 2010, Dr. Udall spent nine years as Executive Director of the Lee Institute, a Charlotte, North Carolina-based non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging collaboration, problem-solving and strategic planning for individuals, civic organizations and community efforts. Anne received her B.A. in Secondary Education and M.A. in Special Education from the University of New Mexico, and received her Ph.D. in Special Education from the University of Arizona. She is the co-chair of the Udall Foundation, a federal agency formed in 1996 to honor the work and legacy of her father, Morris K. Udall, and her uncle, Stewart L. Udall.

Dr. Joseph Wise
Chief Education Officer, Distinctive Schools
Joseph Wise, co-founder of Atlantic Research Partners, has successfully led major public and private-sector organizations throughout North America. He served as Superintendent of Schools for the nation’s 19th largest school district (Duval County Public Schools, Jacksonville, Florida), led the State of Delaware’s largest public school district (Christina School District, Wilmington, Delaware), and served as Director of Organizational Development for the Walt Disney organization.  In an exceptional career, Dr. Wise has successfully bridged academic, business and governmental interests to build—and sustain— decisive organizational reforms. Dr. Wise has also served as Executive Vice President, Chief Education Officer with Edison Learning, Inc., an organization previously engaged in providing education programs and services to 340,000 students throughout 25 states and the United Kingdom. He began his career in education as a teacher, and then began taking on executive leadership roles within the school districts he served. Throughout his early career, Dr. Wise performed consulting and auditing services for school districts and commercial organizations; in 1998, while performing an organizational audit for an education-technology firm based in Dallas, Texas, he was asked to provide additional management training and executive coaching services for the organization.   Upon completion of that work, he was retained to lead the enterprise itself, and served as its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer from 1998 to 2002. Dr. Wise has earned numerous honors; he serves on the National Commission on Writing for America’s Families, Schools, and Colleges, was the 2006 recipient of the national Champion for Children award conferred by the HOSTS Learning organization, was selected as a Broad Fellow by Eli Broad Institute for School Boards (2005), was appointed to the Eli Broad Urban Superintendents Academy as a Fellow (2003), and served previously on the Academy’s adjunct faculty and advisory committee. Dr. Wise also serves on the Board of Directors of the Northwest Evaluation Association, a non-profit assessment firm that supports teaching and learning for more than 4 million students in more than 3,000 U.S. school districts. In addition to his professional achievements, Dr. Wise has been honored for his individual and community service work, remains a lifetime member of the NAACP, a lifetime membership in the Florida Association of PTAs, and a founding member of the District Management Council. Dr. Joseph Wise is the author of three textbooks: Power of Teaching—The Science of the Art (1st Edition 2002; 2nd Edition, 2007); Power of Coaching—Teachers and Teaching (2009); and The TAO of Interviewing (1st Edition 1994; 4th Edition, 2007). Dr. Wise holds a doctorate from the University of Florida, a master’s degree from the University of Central Florida, and a bachelor’s degree from Florida State University.

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