Chief Executive Officer
Jean Desravines assumed the role of chief executive officer of New Leaders in February 2011. Prior to his appointment as CEO, Jean served as chief officer for cities and policy at New Leaders for five years. In that role, Jean oversaw the management of all city teams, including the launch of five of the organization’s 12 sites, and the organization’s national public policy and public funding work. Jean has more than 15 years of professional leadership experience working with parents and communities on education issues and community development, with a primary focus on improving outcomes for children in underserved communities.
Before joining New Leaders, Jean served as senior counselor to the chancellor of New York City’s public school system. In that capacity, he developed and executed a comprehensive strategy to engage and communicate with key stakeholders across New York City, building support for the district’s ambitious reform agenda. He has also served as the executive director for the Office of Parent and Community Engagement, chief of staff to the senior counselor for Education Policy, and director for community relations at the New York City Department of Education, as well as director of organizational development and community programming for the Faith Center for Community Development, Inc.
Jean earned a bachelor of arts in history from St. Francis College and a master’s degree in Public Administration from New York University, where he was the recipient of the Dean’s Scholarship – the school’s most prestigious scholarship.
Recy currently leads the National Cities Team at New Leaders where he manages and supports the executive directors of all program sites. Most recently, Recy served at the New York City Department of Education as the Executive Director of the Charter Schools Office, leading a team responsible for coordinating a portfolio of 136 charter schools. Recy also served as Executive Director of Early Childhood at the NYCDOE, where he managed early childhood initiatives citywide with a focus on Universal Prekindergarten. Previously, he worked at Prince George’s County Public Schools in Maryland and before that completed The Broad Residency in Urban Education while at the District of Columbia Public Schools. Prior to his education experience, Recy worked in the public and private sector in several organizations. Recy has an MBA and an MA in Education from Stanford, and undergraduate degrees from the University of Texas at Austin. Additionally, he completed his School District Leadership certification program at Bank Street College of Education.
Chief Strategy Officer and Co-Founder
Together with several other social entrepreneurs, Ben co-founded New Leaders in 2000. In his current role as chief strategy officer, Ben leads the organization’s Policy and Practice Services, helping states and districts develop new policies, strategies and tools for principal evaluation and principal effectiveness. He is also responsible for the ongoing implementation of the New Leaders organizational learning plan and programmatic evaluation.
In previous roles, Ben has served as chief operating officer, growing the organization from a staff of five to more than 150 employees; chief cities officer, managing and supporting all local program sites; and chief school support officer, developing national and local strategies to support the performance of schools led by New Leader Principals. A recognized expert on principal quality, he is the lead author of the New Leaders white papers “Principal Effectiveness” and “Evaluating Principals,” and he co-led the development of the Urban Excellence Framework, a detailed field guide of the school practices and principal actions found in high-gaining urban public schools.
Ben is also a founding board member of Teach Plus, a nonprofit dedicated to retaining and developing great teachers who improve student achievement. He formerly worked as a consultant at McKinsey and Company, focusing on marketing and operational efficiency. Ben is a graduate of Harvard College and the Harvard Business School, where he received the Fiske award for excellence in teaching in the Economics Department.
Senior Executive Director of Technology Strategies
As senior executive director of technology strategies, Ben leads New Leaders’ efforts to ensure our technology platforms and services best support our program and operations. Ben previously worked in a variety of technology leadership roles in education-connected organizations, including Wireless Generation, Teach For America and SparkNotes.
Chief Policy and Partnerships Officer
As chief policy and partnerships officer, Jackie Gran oversees New Leaders’ efforts to create a supportive policy environment for school leaders and high-performing school leadership preparation programs across the country. These federal, state and local policy efforts are designed to create the working conditions that allow highly effective school leaders to succeed, such as autonomy, accountability and management that fosters professional growth. Before joining New Leaders in 2011, Jackie spent two years at the U.S. Department of Education serving as a special assistant in the Offices of the Secretary and Deputy Secretary and as a senior advisor in the Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development. She was previously the national director of growth and policy at New Leaders, overseeing the selection competition for new district partners. Jackie taught middle school as a Teach For America corps member in New York City. She also served as a legislative aide to Senator Kennedy on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Wellesley College and a master’s degree from Pace University.
Chief Talent Officer
As chief talent officer, Michelle leads the development and management of a comprehensive human resources and organizational effectiveness strategy focused on a number of priorities – including embedding our values into our culture, developing and retaining existing staff members, building out a strong talent management system and identifying high-quality talent as the need arises. Michelle has over twenty years of strategy, consulting, human capital and finance experience. She previously served as the Vice President of Organizational Effectiveness at PSEG Services Corporation (PSEG), a subsidiary of a Fortune 200 Energy Company, leading overall talent strategy including recruitment, performance management and development, succession planning, diversity, employee engagement and human resource technology functions. Prior to assuming this role, Michelle was the Vice President of Workforce Planning & Talent Management at PSEG. She has also served in various strategy and planning roles throughout her career, including as a business consultant at Scott, Madden & Associates in Atlanta, Georgia. Michelle received her BA from the University of Delaware and later earned an MBA from Goizueta Business School at Emory University. Michelle is currently a Board Member of the Newark, New Jersey, YMWCA and a member of the Board of Overseers at the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Chief Program and Cities Officer
A New Leader Principal from the first cohort in 2001, Jennifer K. Henry started working for the organization in 2006. Jennifer first led school support for new principals and later managed and supported several program sites as regional director. In 2012, she took on the role of chief program and cities officer. In this role, she oversees the design and delivery of all three of our leadership development programs and manages our 12 city program sites across the country. Jennifer is the founding executive director of the Academy for Urban School Leadership (AUSL) in Chicago, a not-for-profit teacher preparation and school management organization working in partnership with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) to effect the transformation of underperforming schools. As its first executive director, Jennifer developed the teacher recruitment, selection and training model that prepares AUSL graduates to teach in Chicago’s underperforming schools. Prior to AUSL, Jennifer was the executive director of a nonprofit organization in the Bay Area called Making Waves that provided year-long intensive academic support to middle school students who were at risk of failing. Jennifer started her career as a high school history teacher.She holds a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and a Master of Business Administration from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management.
Chief Operating Officer
As chief operating officer, Dianne leads New Leaders’ talent management, business solutions, and information technology teams. She also oversees New Leaders’ Effective Practices Incentive Community (EPIC) program and select strategic partnerships. Dianne brings 25 years of experience in business operations and executive leadership to her role at New Leaders. As a management consultant with Booz Allen Hamilton, Honeywell, and Arthur Andersen, she worked with many FORTUNE 100 and government organizations to create and launch strategic initiatives. Dianne later filled executive roles within services-oriented enterprises, most recently as the turnaround chief executive officer of Digital Focus, Inc.
Dianne has served as chair of the Career and Technical Education Advisory Committee for Fairfax County Public Schools, was a member of the Superintendent’s Business Advisory Council, and designed and taught foundational curriculum for master’s level strategy and leadership courses at the University of Maryland’s Erickson School. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and her Master of Business Administration from William and Mary. She is also the co-author of the book Vision, Values, and Courage: Leadership for Quality Management.
As General Counsel of New Leaders, Laura provides legal counsel and advice for all aspects of New Leaders and in areas encompassing intellectual property, employment law, tax, regulatory compliance, contracting, business law, and insurance. Laura also serves as Secretary for New Leaders.
Prior to joining New Leaders in 2010, Laura was a litigation partner at the New York office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP, where she handled a variety of matters include employment, antitrust, bankruptcy, and breach of contract cases; white collar internal investigations; and international arbitrations. Laura also represented New Leaders and other nonprofits on a pro bono basis while at Kirkland and earned the Kirkland & Ellis Pro Bono Service Award from 2005 through 2009. Prior to that, Laura clerked for Judge Bernice Bouie Donald on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee in Memphis. She has a BA from Yale University and JD from Harvard Law School.
Chief External Relations Officer
Stephanie Morimoto is responsible for helping to fulfill New Leaders’ mission of high academic achievement for all children by marshaling resources, cultivating champions and increasing awareness of New Leaders’ programs and impact. As chief external relations officer, she oversees development, marketing and communications. Before joining New Leaders, Stephanie was vice president, regional development for Teach For America, where she grew funding from $30 million to $114 million, led the growth of Teach For America’s first individual giving campaign and built the organizational infrastructure to support the rapid growth and expansion of the program from 3500 teaching corps members to 7500. Prior to that, Stephanie worked closely with the president and chief executive officer at WSEP Ventures, Inc., launching and directing a social enterprise training institute for nonprofit CEOs and advising nonprofits across the United States on growth strategy, social venture business planning and organizational capacity-building. Stephanie has also consulted with various political entrepreneurs and educational entities, including the Tennessee State Department of Education. Early in her career, she was a management consultant at McKinsey & Co. and taught English in Hiroshima, Japan. Stephanie earned her bachelor’s degree from Brown University.
Chief Financial Officer
As chief financial officer, Angela leads New Leaders’ finance and technology teams and helps us continue to build on our progress towards financial sustainability. Angela previously worked for Jewish Board of Family and Children Services, a $190 million dollar nonprofit. She supervised a staff of 50, served on the Senior Management Team and worked directly with the organization’s Board Members. Angela has held leadership roles at Atlantic Philanthropies, Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum and DIAGEO. She received her MBA from New York University and is a Certified Public Accountant.