Advisory Board

PACE is governed by its five Faculty Directors, one from each of our partner universities. PACE is headquartered at Stanford University, where it is overseen by the Graduate School of Education and the Stanford University Board of Trustees. Our Advisory Board comprises a diverse and distinguished group of leaders in California’s education system, who provide strategic guidance and advice to the Faculty Directors.

Since 2017, Jorge A. Aguilar has been superintendent of the Sacramento City Unified School District, the 13th largest school district in California with nearly 43,000 students, more than 4,700 employees, a budget exceeding $528 million. Under his leadership, the graduation rate increased to 85.9%, up 3% in one year. The district has also created a historical data-sharing agreement with all of the region’s major higher education institutions to identify and address the challenges preventing students...

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Carl A. Cohn is a clinical professor emeritus in the School of Educational Studies at Claremont Graduate University and was formerly the director of the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence, a state agency established by Governor Brown and the State Legislature to advise and assist school districts on their academic performance. Before his tenure at Claremont, he served as superintendent of schools in the San Diego Unified School District. Prior to that, he worked as...

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Susan Colby is the chief executive officer and co-founder of Imagine Worldwide, a nonprofit organization that developed a software curriculum in literacy and mathematics that are localized for students living in poor countries. The software is delivered to students on a tablets that run on a mobile server and solar power or other appropriate energy source, and the programs are designed to meet local geographical, cultural, and linguistic contexts. Prior to founding Imagine, Colby was...

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Glen Harvey became chief executive officer (CEO) of WestEd in June 1997 and has led the agency’s transformation to a mission-driven and quality- and impact-focused agency. Under her leadership, WestEd emphasizes performing the highest quality research-based work to promote excellence, achieve equity, and improve learning for children, youth, and adults. Harvey ensures that WestEd produces significant and positive impact, especially for those children and their families in greatest need. To meet the diverse needs of...

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Scott Hill is Vice President of the College Board, leading the team that support students, teachers, schools, and higher education institutions in the Western Region. He has served in various leadership positions in California, regionally, nationally, and internationally in the areas of standards, assessments, accountability, and organizational management. Before joining the College Board in 2013, he was a senior program officer at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, where his portfolio managed the Foundation’s Common...

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Michael W. Kirst is professor emeritus of education and business administration at Stanford University and a co-founder of PACE. He is a longtime education advisor to former California Governor Jerry Brown, who four times appointed Kirst president of state board. In this position, Kirst was instrumental in reshaping education policy and finance in California, overseeing the new academic standards and assessments in math and English language arts, the new science standards, and the Local Control...

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Ted Lempert is the president of Children Now, a national research and advocacy organization based in Oakland. He is lecturer in the Political Science Department at the University of California, Berkeley. Lempert was previously the cofounder and chief executive officer of EdVoice. Lempert has also been a California State Assemblymember representing San Mateo and Santa Clara counties, and he has served as chair of the Assembly Higher Education Committee and cochair of the Joint Committee...

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Al Mijares is superintendent of the Orange County, California Department of Education. Before that, he served for six years as the vice president of the College Board where he worked to expand the high school-to-university pipeline with the goal of preparing all students, especially underrepresented students, are prepared for college and careers. He joined the College Board after serving as Superintendent of the Santa Ana Unified School District and the Bakersfield City School District. Dr...

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Christy Pichel has served in management positions in philanthropy and nonprofit organizations for over thirty years. Most recently she served as the president of the Stuart Foundation, a private family foundation dedicated to improving public education and child welfare systems. She also served in management at the Public Policy Institute of California, the James Irvine Foundation, and the CS Fund. She was a founder and executive director of the Summerfield Waldorf School & Farm and...

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