This afternoon in a press conference at the Reeves Center, Vince Gray announced five appointees to administration positions. The first two were education-oriented positions, with Gray appointing De’Shawn A. Wright to Deputy Mayor for Education, and Hosanna Mahaley to the Office of the State Superintendent of Education’s head. In addition, Gray appointed Rochelle Webb to run DOES, and Gustavo Velasquez and Clarence Brown to continue on at DOHR and the Office on Aging, respectively.
Before coming to DC, Wright served as an independent advisor to Newark Mayor Cory Booker on education, and a Partner in the Newark Charter School Fund. The NCSF has been very effective at gathering funding for the new charter school movement in Newark, raising $22M from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation. Before coming to Newark, Wright worked in the New York City Department of Education, both as a teacher, an administrator, and in the Chancellor’s Office.
Hosanna Mahaley joins OSSE from a long career in Education organizations. Most recently, she was the Executive Director, Social Justice and District Innovation at Wireless Generation, where she advised school systems that use their student products. Before Wireless Generation, Mahaley served as President of the Atlanta Education Fund, which worked with public and private partnerships to accelerate student achievement. She has also served as Arne Duncan’s chief of staff (when he was CEO of Chicago Public Schools) and worked on their Renaissance 2010 education campaign, and is an Advisory Board member of Education Sector, an education think tank in DC.
Both will work with Interim Chancellor Kaya Henderson at DCPS in their roles with the Gray Administration. Henderson will continue forward in the Interim position at DCPS.
Update: Interim Chancellor Kaya Henderson released this statement: “I’m excited to work with the new State Superintendent and Deputy Mayor for Education in continuing the reform efforts already underway in the District.”