Big thinkers. Innovators. Educators. Collaborators. Committed to moving education forward.
These are our leaders—passionate people, experts in their respective fields.
Dr. Karen Garza has dedicated her life to bettering educational opportunities for all students. Over the last three decades, she has served in several roles, including superintendent and chief academic officer. In December 2016, she joined Battelle for Kids as the organization’s President and CEO.
Karen most recently served as the superintendent of Fairfax County Public Schools, Virginia—the 10th largest school division in the U.S., serving a diverse student population of more than 186,000 students—from 2013–2016.
Under Karen’s leadership, Battelle for Kids provides innovative services and solutions that empower teachers, leaders, and school systems to advance educational equity and opportunity for all students.
Paul is committed to ensuring operations are running smoothly and building strong teams to support school districts and the various educational-improvement initiatives in which Battelle for Kids is engaged. He plays an instrumental role in building a culture that supports learning, innovative thinking, and growth.
Prior to joining Battelle for Kids, Paul devoted 35 years to public education, including roles as an elementary school teacher, middle school principal, director of teaching and learning, and assistant superintendent.
Additionally, he has served as an adjunct faculty member at Ashland University, teaching graduate courses on community engagement and politics.
Donna brings more than 20 years of experience in financial operations to Battelle for Kids.
She leads a team that plays an integral role in the organization’s business and operations planning, including accounting, budget development, and other financial activities.
Donna previously served as the Chief Financial Officer and Operating Partner for Cameron Mitchell Restaurants, an independent and privately held company with eight different concepts in seven states. She also has held several leadership positions in various industries.
Donna's experience in education and business offers new ways of thinking to ensure operational excellence on behalf of the organization and the school systems we serve.
With more than 30 years of experience in education and technology, John provides organizational and strategic oversight for Battelle for Kids and the education organizations we serve to solve problems, imagine new opportunities, and deliver solutions that support educators along the way.
He regularly engages as an adviser, panelist, and speaker to help education stakeholders and organizations across the country—building their capacity to use multiple types of data, including performance, perception, practice, and professionalism, to not only gauge effectiveness, but support the ongoing growth of all educators.
Prior to joining Battelle for Kids, John served as the regional manager for SchoolNet, Inc., helping create Web-based products to help teachers access student data and curricular standards via the Internet for use in instructional planning. He was also a middle school teacher and technology coordinator in several Ohio school districts.
Tony leads a team committed to helping school systems adopt cohesive and comprehensive school improvement efforts. Strategic planning, human capital management systems improvement, leadership development, and professional development are all focus areas for the team. Tony has served in many leadership roles across Battelle for Kids. A common thread across these roles is his ability to provide strategic counsel around leadership, developing talent, and change management at the state and local levels.
Most recently under his leadership, BFK has been collaborating with the American Association of School Personnel Administrators (AASPA) to build a highly recognized and highly regarded national certification program and standards geared toward individuals who practice and lead people-related work in PK–12 education. He also has led Battelle for Kids’ work partnering with educators in Tennessee for several years.
Tony joined Battelle for Kids in 2007 after serving 21 years as a teacher, coach, and administrator at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. He also worked as an assistant superintendent, where he was responsible for curriculum, human resources, data, and testing.
Jamie brings more than 25 years of diverse educational background, including classroom teaching experience, school and district administrative positions, and national consulting to her role as a Chief Officer at Battelle for Kids. She is committed to designing frameworks and resources that build school systems’ capacity to make foundational shifts in teacher practice from delivery of academic content to facilitator of 21st-century learning opportunities to realize the power and promise of education for every learner.
With experience as a teacher, director of data and assessment, and consultant, Jamie frequently serves as an adviser and presenter around the appropriate uses of various measures to improve teaching and learning.
With more than 35 years of experience serving as a teacher, principal, assistant superintendent, superintendent, and adjunct professor, Jim served as Battelle for Kids' executive director from 2001 to 2016.
Under his leadership, the organization has partnered with state departments of education, some of the country’s largest school districts, and national foundations in nearly 30 states and Hong Kong to move education forward.
A well-known motivational speaker, Jim has made presentations throughout the United States, Canada, and China. He frequently speaks, writes, and advises around the importance of collaborative action around powerful practices in education, particularly in rural communities.
Jacque is committed to helping educators develop and effectively use multiple measures to inform teaching and learning.
As a Senior Director of Learning and Leading at Battelle for Kids, she has helped lead the development and delivery of the Ohio Department of Education’s statewide assessment literacy trainings. She led the design and development of high-quality arts assessments with districts participating in the Ohio Arts Assessment Collaborative.
Stephanie is committed to operational excellence for Battelle for Kids and the school systems and state departments of education we serve across the country.
As the Managing Director of Project Management, she leads a team of business professionals who work to deliver the highest-quality, services, solutions, and products to help school districts achieve their educational-improvement goals. The team oversees the development and implementation of project plans to achieve desired goals, ensuring operational efficiency and effective communications with project teams every step of the way.
Stephanie has provided project management oversight for large-scale collaboratives, initiatives, and events across the country to move education forward.
Eddie engages with school districts and education organizations across the state of Florida to help them solve complex problems, envision new opportunities, and meet needs to move education forward.
With diverse experience serving a teacher, coach, high school principal, superintendent, and other roles in education, Eddie provides counsel in areas such as leader and teacher development and strategic planning for school improvement.
Well-versed in the use of technology in education, Eddie also serves on task forces across the state of Florida to identify ways to efficiently scale its use to help school systems advance educational equity and opportunity for all students.
Mark is committed to empowering teachers and developing leaders to build thriving cultures of learning that provide new pathways to college and career readiness for every child.
As a Managing Director, Mark provides counsel to build the capacity of educators in various roles to make teaching more powerful, prepare students to meet higher learning standards, and align professional learning to strengths and needs. He has been a strategic adviser to the Ohio Department of Education and school districts across the state as they implement Race to the Top and other large-scale improvement efforts.
Mark has more than 35 years of experience serving as a former teacher, high school principal, director of secondary instruction, and athletic director in schools across Ohio.
When it comes to big and innovative ideas for using research- and evidence-based strategies to help schools improve opportunities for students, Todd is often at the helm. A Managing Director with more than 20 years of experience in education, consulting, and technology, he is skilled in envisioning new opportunities and building school leaders’ capacity to navigate change.
Brad, Managing Director of Strategy and Innovation, leads Battelle for Kids’ efforts to build and leverage philanthropic resources and grants to help fund innovative education reform, especially around rural collaboratives that serve as learning labs to pilot educational-improvement and leadership development initiatives.
He previously led the Ohio Appalachian Collaborative, a partnership between Battelle for Kids and 21 school districts in southeast Ohio dedicated to developing a comprehensive approach to accelerating college and career readiness.
Throughout his career, Brad has worked at the national and state levels in the role of educational policy analyst, serving on the staff of the 1982 National Commission on Excellence in Education (A Nation at Risk) and as Director of Community Partnerships for the Ohio Children and Family First Initiative.
With nearly 20 years of experience, including 12 years in communications for education-focused organizations, Julianne helps school systems develop and implement strategies that build stakeholders’ understanding and engagement around the important roles they play to increase student success.
As the Managing Director of Marketing and Communications, she leads a team of specialists and graphic designers who provide counsel and implementation support to roll out large-scale school improvement initiatives at the district, collaborative, and state levels, particularly in the areas of branding and messaging; teacher and leader engagement; and parent and community engagement.
Under her leadership, Battelle for Kids has been honored to receive more than 60 national and statewide awards for effective communications on behalf of our organization and the educators we serve.
Bobby strives to inspire and motivate educators through collaboration, professional learning, innovation, and a clear focus on the mission to ensure all students reach their fullest potential.
A frequent presenter on a variety of topics with experience as a former teacher, principal, and superintendent, Bobby authored the book, Inspire, Motivate, Collaborate: Leading with Emotional Intelligence.
With an extensive background in education, assessment, and technology, Mike has a wealth of knowledge and experience in standards-based education, instructional leadership, and the use of value-added analysis to inform teaching and learning.
He provides strategic counsel to support strategic planning and development of associated impact metrics. He also coordinates internal and external research initiatives, and assists the creation and delivery of professional development resources for educators.
He most recently served as the Superintendent for eight schools Glenview School District 34 in Glenview, Illinois. Prior to this role Mike served as the Executive Director of Secondary Learning for Olentangy Local School District in Ohio.
Bob joined Battelle for Kids in 2010, bringing two decades of experience in technology solutions, systems design, data analysis, and application programming. As a Senior Director of Technology, Bob has played a significant role leading the technical work in several statewide roll outs of our learning management system BFK•Learn®, as well as leading roster verification projects in hundreds of school districts across the country.
Bob leverages his technology background, leadership skills, and educational focus to help SEAs and LEAs identify, design, and implement technology solutions directly targeted to educational improvement.
Oscar is committed to developing innovative technology solutions that state departments of education and school districts across the country are using to move education forward.
As the Managing Director of Technology, he leads a team of analysts and software developers who help school systems ensure data quality, provide blended learning experiences, and streamline processes for operational excellence.
Bilingual in English and Spanish, Oscar is a native of Peru. Before moving to the United States, he was founder of a consulting company focused on the development of enterprise applications for middle-market companies. He also has experience in manufacturing, banking, telecom, and commercial software development.
Kim provides communications and change leadership counsel to school districts and state departments of education across the country to plan and implement large-scale improvement initiatives to improve teaching and learning.
As a Senior Director of Marketing and Communications, she advises school systems about strategies to tell their story, engage parents and families, attract and retain students and staff, prepare teachers and leaders to implement new standards and assessments as well as multiple measures to inform practice, engage businesses as school partners for project-based learning, and more. Her expertise includes strategic planning, branding, crisis communications, stakeholder engagement, change management, focus group facilitation, and thought leadership.
With more than 20 years of experience, Kim has held leadership roles with public relations and public affairs agencies, serving clients focused on education and economic development among others. Kim is president of the John Glenn College of Public Affairs Alumni Board and teaches graduate-level policy and nonprofit communications courses at The Ohio State University.
With 20 years of experience in the field of education, Denise has dedicated her career to empowering teachers and helping district and school leaders develop the skills to lead in a complex education environment.
With nearly 40 years of experience as a teacher, instructional coach, consultant, and professional development strategist, Diane works along side educators across the country to build their capacity to improve student achievement.
As a Senior Director of Learning and Leading, she supports the development and enhancement of instructional solutions to help make teaching more powerful, prepare students to meet higher learning standards, and align professional learning to strengths and needs.
A collaborator by nature, Diane has presented at several national conferences and holds memberships in multiple education associations.