Hon. Kristen Amundson brings more than two decades of experience as a policymaker to NASBE. She represented the 44th District in the Virginia General Assembly from 1999-2009. During that time, she was a member of Virginia’s P–16 Council and the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB). Before successfully running for an Assembly seat, Amundson—a former teacher—served for nearly a decade on the Fairfax County, Va., School Board, including two years as its chairwoman. Most recently, she was the senior vice president for external affairs at Education Sector, an independent think tank. She writes frequently on education issues and has been published in The Washington Post and the Richmond Times-Dispatch, among others.
Project Director - School Discipline
As the director of NASBE's school discipline initiative, Kimberly Charis is working to raise the consciousness of state policymakers on issues related to the so-called school-to-prison pipeline. This work centers around increasing the capacity of state boards of education to build effective statewide networks that improve students' educational outcomes and reduce their involvement in the juvenile justice system. She also leads business development on issues related to youth sport concussion and academic achievement.
Project Director - Next Generation Science Standards
As the director of NASBE’s Next Generation Science Standards project, Francis Eberle works with state boards of education so that they better understand the science standards and the implications for the implementing them. This effort ensures state boards have a strong knowledge base of the science standards to make informed decisions about communications, state plans and adoption and implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards.
Deputy Executive Director
Bray Hull is NASBE's deputy executive director and chief of staff. Working closely with the executive director, Dr. Hull serves as a voice for NASBE by developing and strengthening partnerships with other organizations and education constituents. He also works to ensure the comprehensive implementation of the strategic plan and oversees all staff and department functions.Dr. Hull's education and experience extends from classical music performer, to college instructor, policymaker, education researcher, and administrator. He demonstrates expertise in research methods in the education/social sciences and in history/cultural studies, extensive and varied experiences in teaching and educational leadership, and working knowledge of public policy development and of legislative and advocacy processes.
Manager of Administration & Meetings
Kristie Jones is NASBE's manager of administration and meetings. In this role, Jones provides administrative support to NASBE's executive director and deputy executive director. She also supports NASBE's board of directors, manages aspects of board meetings, and serves as the board's primary liaison to the organization's leadership. Jones also directs and coordinates NASBE's popular annual conferences and events and works regularly with state board members across the country.
LeeNaura (Lee) King is an accounting assistant at NASBE. In this role, she provides administrative support to the accounting department. She also acts as liaison to NASBE's IT support staff, and maintains its infrastructure and office equipment. In addition, King assists the publications team with requests and mailings and maintains the organization's growing database.
Director of Knowledge Resources
Editor of NASBE's policy journal, The State Education Standard, David Kysilko is also responsible for developing and editing or writing all other documents included in NASBE's Member Information Resources Binder, as well as the major NASBE reports and other published materials of the Association. He oversees NASBE's publications division, which in addition to printed materials includes the Chair's Headline Review, the content of the website, desktop publishing, working with designers and printers, marketing, sales, answering inquiries from state board members or the public about NASBE's publications.
Project Director - Center for Safe and Healthy Schools
Whitney Meagher directs NASBE's Center for Safe and Healthy Schools. An expert in school health policy issues, Meagher provides technical assistance to state board of education members who are creating and implementing evidence-based policies to improve school health environments. She also serves as a liaison to national school health organizations and government health agencies and represents NASBE within national coalitions and advisory groups.Meagher has a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from Northwestern University and a master's in social work from the University of Pennsylvania. She was previously at the National PTA where she worked with parents and PTA leaders on advocacy and program implementation in the areas of school health and safety. She has also worked in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems.
Project Director for the Common Core State Standards
Efrain Mercado directs NASBE's Common Core State Standards work. He came to NASBE from Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) as its lead strategist on Common Core. Previously he was director of outreach at the National Center for Educational Achievement at ACT.
Project Specialist-Deeper Learning Project
Ace Parsi is a project specialist focusing on deeper learning issues. He is the main point of contact related to this work and as such, Parsi builds partnership coalitions, authors policy updates and discussion guides, provides individualized assistance to state boards, plans and conducts tailored in-state workshops for state board members, coordinates speakers and agendas for conference sessions and online seminars, and promotes positive communications strategies for NASBE members.
Renée Rybak Lang
Renée Rybak Lang is NASBE’s communication director, overseeing all of the association’s communications efforts. Lang has worked in education policy for more than 10 years and brings a wealth of strategic communications, online, and social media expertise to NASBE. Lang also regularly advises education nonprofits on social media and web strategy and has presented at NTEN’s Nonprofit Technology Conference and the PIE-Network's annual conference, among others.
Most recently, Lang was communications manager of Education Sector, where she developed integrated communications strategies to reach policymakers and other key audiences, and established the think tank’s award-winning social media and web presence. Prior to this, she was special projects coordinator for the 21st Century Schools Project at the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI) and served as an aide to New York State Senator George Maziarz, where she worked on constituent issues and legislation. Born and raised in western New York, Lang is a graduate of Binghamton University in Binghamton, N.Y., where she studied political science.
Amelia Vance is a policy analyst with NASBE. Vance has deep expertise in data privacy issues, and among many things, will focus on monitoring the implementation of the Common Core State Standards across nine key states. This will include conducting research, producing rapid-response materials, tracking policy developments, and writing policy papers. She will also collaborate with the NASBE team to produce analysis and materials relevant to education policy reforms, particularly state implementation of the Common Core State Standards.