We are very pleased that Dr. LaWonda Smith has accepted the position of Executive Director, Race to the Top Road Map Consortium Project. Puget Sound Educational Service District (PSESD) and the Road Map districts could not be more fortunate to have such a well-rounded, experienced leader step forward to guide completion of the Race to the Top grant. In this role, LaWonda will report to the Race to the Top Executive Committee to lead project management and fiscal oversight of the $40 million U.S. Department of Education grant.
Dr. Smith’s career spans that of elementary teacher, building administrator of an ethnically and economically diverse high-need school in the Road Map region, Title I and LAP Program Manager at the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and Seattle University adjunct professor. Dr. Smith has also led the English Language Arts Program at Puget Sound ESD, developing and facilitating professional learning opportunities for the Washington State Teachers and District Literacy Leaders.
She has closely partnered with OSPI and local school districts to support planning and implementation of the Common Core State Standards. LaWonda holds a Leadership for Learning doctorate from the University of Washington, a Master of Leadership degree from UW Tacoma, and Master of Teaching and Liberal Arts degrees from Oregon State University. Additionally, Dr. Smith’s doctoral work, “Improving Disproportionality of Students of Color in Highly Capable Programs” is published in the November 2015, Washington Educational Research Association Journal and in the April 2016, University of Washington Educational Law and Policy Society Journal.