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Seven Leaders Named by Education Department Secretary Arne Duncan to the National Assessment Governing Board

Seven Leaders Named by Education Secretary Arne Duncan to National Assessment Governing Board, Overseeing The Nation's Report Card

For Immediate Release: October 6, 2015

(WASHINGTON) – A Florida school superintendent, a Tennessee school board chief, a District of Columbia business and education policy leader, an Indiana high school teacher, an Oregon professor, a Washington state assessment expert and a longtime California educator and curriculum expert have been appointed to the National Assessment Governing Board to serve four-year terms, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced today.

The appointees will help set policy for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as The Nation’s Report Card. NAEP makes objective information on student performance in nearly a dozen subjects available to policymakers and the public at the national, state and local levels. NAEP has played an important role in evaluating the condition and progress of American education since 1969. The 26-member Governing Board — including governors, state legislators, local and state school officials, educators and researchers, business representatives and members of the general public — determines subjects and content to be tested, sets the achievement levels for reporting and releases the results to the public.

The appointees include three returning members who were first appointed in 2011: Dale Nowlin, a mathematics teacher and department chair in Columbus, Indiana; B. Fielding Rolston, chair of the Tennessee State Board of Education; and Cary Sneider, an associate professor at Portland State University in Oregon. The remaining appointees are new members: Alberto Carvalho, superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools; Carol Jago, associate director for the California Reading and Literature Project at the University of California, Los Angeles; Linda Rosen, CEO of Change the Equation in the District of Columbia; and Joe Willhoft, an assessment consultant and former executive director of the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. Their terms officially began Oct. 1, 2015, and will end on Sept. 30, 2019.

"The collective wisdom, experience and skills of the appointees play a crucial role in ensuring that The Nation’s Report Card remains an effective barometer for what our students know and can do in core subjects,” Duncan said. "I am confident that their thoughts and recommendations on K-12 education will further strengthen the Board’s oversight of these important assessments."

The new and reappointed Board members and the categories they represent are summarized below:

  • Alberto Carvalho (Miami, local school superintendent): Carvalho is the superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, the nation’s fourth-largest school system, with 350 schools and more than 400,000 students. He has served the school system in several capacities since 1998, including as chief communications officer, administrative director and both associate and assistant superintendent. As a schools chief, Carvalho serves as instructional leader and heads several initiatives, including a program that enhances digital content and technology and a program that streamlines the district’s business operations and financial systems. Under his leadership, the district has won numerous accolades, including the 2014 College Board Advanced Placement Equity and Excellence District of the Year and the 2012 Broad Prize for Urban Education. Carvalho was selected as the National Superintendent of the Year in 2014 and also was honored by the president of Portugal with the “Ordem de Mérito Civil,” and by Mexico with the “Ohtli Award,” the highest award for a civilian living outside of Mexico.

  • Carol Jago (Oak Park, Illinois; curriculum specialist): Jago is a longtime teacher, expert and writer in reading and English language arts, with much of her service performed in the Los Angeles area. She is associate director for the California Reading and Literature Project at the University of California, Los Angeles. Jago also taught English at the middle and high school levels for 32 years, and has served as president of the National Council of Teachers of English. She chairs the College Board’s English Academic Advisory Committee and serves on the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) Technical Advisory Committee. Her numerous consulting duties have included serving as a committee member for the 2009 NAEP reading and 2011 NAEP writing assessment frameworks. A prolific writer, Jago wrote an education column for the Los Angeles Times and has published numerous books and essays. She edits the journal of the California Association of Teachers of English.

  • Dale Nowlin (Columbus, Indiana; 12th-grade teacher): Nowlin is a mathematics teacher and department chair for the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation. He has taught at Columbus North High School in Indiana since 1997 and also serves as the mathematics department chair for North High School and Northside Middle School. Nowlin has taught in his home state of Indiana since 1979 and for Bartholomew Consolidated since 1985. He also serves as an adjunct faculty member at Indiana University Bloomington. Nowlin has won numerous awards and grants, including the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Teaching, as both a national and state awardee, and the Lilly Endowment Teacher Creativity Grant. Nowlin is currently a member of the Governing Board’s Assessment Development Committee and hosted the May 2015 quarterly Board meeting in his hometown of Columbus.

  • B. Fielding Rolston (Kingsport, Tennessee; state school board member): Rolston chairs the Tennessee State Board of Education and was first appointed to the Tennessee education board in 1996. With a professional background in engineering, he has served as board chair for several other organizations in the field of higher education, health and industry, including the Wellmont Health System, Emory & Henry College, and Eastman Credit Union. In 2003, he retired from Eastman Chemical Company with more than 38 years of service that included work as an industrial engineer. Rolston held a series of management posts in industrial engineering, strategic planning, supply and distribution, and human resources and communications. He currently serves as vice chair of the Governing Board’s Committee on Standards, Design and Methodology, and is a member of its executive and nominations committees.

  • Linda Rosen (District of Columbia, business representative): Rosen is CEO of Change the Equation, and her business and education policy work has emphasized the importance of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Her organization’s corporate members work to ensure that K-12 students are STEM-literate by collaborating with schools, communities and states to adopt and implement relevant policies and programs. Rosen previously served as president of Education and Management Innovations, which focused on math and science education policy, and she was senior vice president of the National Alliance of Business, with a concentration in math and science education. Rosen also worked as special adviser to Education Secretary Richard Riley and as executive director of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
  • Cary Sneider (Portland, Oregon; curriculum specialist): Sneider is associate research professor at the Center for Science Education, Portland State University, where he teaches courses in research methodology and serves as co-principal investigator for a National Science Foundation-funded curriculum development project. He is also a consultant for the Noyce Foundation and the Stephen D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation, and chairs the LinkEngineering committee for the National Academy of Engineering. He contributed to “A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas,” and headed the engineering team to develop the Next Generation Science Standards. He served as the planning committee co-chair for the 2014 NAEP Technology and Engineering Literacy Framework, and on the development team for the 2009 NAEP Science Framework. Previously, Sneider was vice president for programs at the Museum of Science in Boston and director of astronomy and physics education for Lawrence Hall of Science at the University of California, Berkeley. He has authored numerous publications in the science education field. Sneider currently serves as vice chair of the Governing Board’s Assessment Development Committee, and is a member of its executive and nominations committees.

  • Joe Willhoft (Tacoma, Washington; testing and measurement expert): Willhoft is an assessment expert and consultant who served as assistant superintendent for student assessment in Washington state. Willhoft also served as executive director of the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. He worked for Tacoma Public Schools for 15 years as executive director of its research and evaluation department. Willhoft served in public education for 45 years and has worked on numerous advisory committees and boards, including the Governing Board and the Council of Chief State School Officers.

The members take office as the Governing Board is involved in several initiatives and major activities, including the first-ever Technology and Engineering Literacy Assessment, with results to be released in spring 2016; a move to computer-based NAEP assessments; and a comprehensive plan to expand outreach efforts and partnerships to better inform audiences nationwide about NAEP resources and data.

"It is a pleasure to welcome an incredible group of individuals with a committed sense of leadership and impressive accomplishments. They will be the kind of members we need to help this Board spearhead NAEP innovations and maintain its position as the gold standard of assessment," Governing Board Chair Terry Mazany said. 

For more information about the Governing Board, go to More information on The Nation’s Report Card can be found at

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