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Education Leader William J. Bushaw Appointed Executive Director of the National Assessment Governing Board, Overseer of NAEP

Education Leader William J. Bushaw Appointed Executive Director of the National Assessment Governing Board, Overseer of NAEP

Outgoing PDK International CEO to Begin Duties July 27

For Immediate Release: May 6, 2015

(WASHINGTON) – The National Assessment Governing Board, which sets policy for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) — otherwise known as The Nation’s Report Card — has appointed longtime educator William J. Bushaw as its new executive director.

Bushaw, who will begin July 27, will be responsible for the execution of policies and projects initiated by the 26-member independent and nonpartisan Board, which was established by the U.S. Congress. Bushaw will also serve as chief of staff for the Board and ensure that the Board continues to develop sound policies to guide NAEP, a large-scale assessment program that measures student achievement across the nation, all states and 21 large urban districts.

Bushaw is the outgoing chief executive officer of PDK International, a leading family of education associations that includes Phi Delta Kappa International, a professional association of educators; Pi Lambda Theta (PLT), a collegiate honor society in education; the Future Educators Association (FEA), a precollegiate association of high school students interested in becoming educators; and the PDK Educational Foundation, a nonprofit charitable organization with endowed scholarships for future and current educators. During his 10-year tenure, Bushaw led the organization through a period of change that included revamping Kappan magazine, acquiring PLT, energizing the FEA by establishing a teacher recruitment model focused on quality and diversity, and moving PDK headquarters from Bloomington, Indiana to Washington, D.C. Bushaw has also served as one of the co-authors of the highly regarded annual PDK/Gallup Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools.

Prior to PDK, Bushaw served as learning systems director for the University of Michigan’s Merit Network Inc., a nonprofit research organization where he managed multiple national and state research grants. Additionally, Bushaw was deputy superintendent and chief academic officer for the Michigan Department of Education, overseeing multiple departments within the state education agency. He also served as state director of the Michigan North Central Association, a high school principal, and an elementary and middle school teacher. In addition to his career in education, Bushaw served in the United States Navy, active and reserve, retiring at the rank of captain.

"Dr. Bushaw has held significant education policy and leadership positions over more than three decades, and this vast and diverse background will serve the Board well as we work to expand the impact and outreach of NAEP,” said Chair Terry Mazany. “He also has proved to be an enthusiastic, influential, diligent and forward-thinking leader. His expertise and vision will be instrumental to the Board’s work in the years to come."

Bushaw joins the Governing Board — comprising state, local and federal officials, educators, business representatives and members of the public — as it is undertaking several initiatives and efforts, many in conjunction with the National Center for Education Statistics, which administers NAEP. These include a campaign to promote assessment literacy, the movement to computerized testing, a rollout of a dynamic, nationally representative measure of eighth-graders’ skills in technology and engineering literacy and a Board-led strategic planning initiative to comprehensively expand outreach and encourage NAEP innovation.

"In my personal and professional life, I have not settled for the status quo and neither has the Governing Board in its 25-year history of maintaining NAEP as the gold standard in educational assessment," Bushaw said. "I am excited to join the staff of this eminent Board as it embarks on a new era of innovation and outreach for The Nation’s Report Card."


Dr. William J. Bushaw: Additional Background 


  • Ph.D. – University of Michigan, Educational Foundations, Policy and Administration; 
  • M.A. – Eastern Michigan University, Educational Leadership; B.S. – University of Michigan, Biology

Sample of Memberships:

  • Indiana University School of Education National Board of Visitors
  • Learning First Alliance Executive Board (former chair)
  • Council of Chief State School Officers Assessment Conference Planning Committee
  • National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Advisory Council for Administrator Certification
  • Michigan ACT Executive Committee (former chair)

Stephaan Harris