NAGB Header Image

Six leaders named by U.S. Education Secretary John King to National Assessment Governing Board

For Immediate Release: September 23, 2016

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Six education leaders from around the country — two state legislators, a testing and measurement expert, a local school board member, a nonpublic school leader and a general public representative — have been appointed to the National Assessment Governing Board to serve four-year terms, U.S. Secretary of Education John King 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 offers objective data on student performance in nearly a dozen subjects to the public and to education policymakers at the national, state and local levels. The information NAEP provides helps education stakeholders evaluate the progress of American education. The 26-member nonpartisan Governing Board determines the subjects and content NAEP tests, sets the achievement levels for reporting and publicly releases the results.

"We are honored to welcome these exceptional education leaders to the Board," King said. "The Board plays a vital role in helping to shape education in our country, and their perspectives and insights will be major assets in strengthening the status of The Nation’s Report Card as the gold standard for measuring academic achievement."

Four leaders were reappointed, along with two new state legislators, whose terms begin Oct. 1, 2016, and end Sept. 30, 2020. The new and reappointed Governing Board members, along with the roles they represent, are listed below:

  • Rebecca Gagnon (Minneapolis – local school board member): Gagnon serves as treasurer on the Minneapolis Public Schools Board of Education and joined the Governing Board in 2012. Gagnon was re-elected to her seat on the Minneapolis school board — which oversees 75 schools and 36,000 students — in 2015, and she will represent the local district until 2019. She also chairs the Governing Board’s Reporting and Dissemination Committee.

  • Andrew Ho (Boston – testing and measurement expert): Ho joined the Governing Board in 2012 and is a professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he conducts psychometric research on accountability metrics and teaches courses involving educational measurement and statistics. He chairs the Governing Board’s Committee on Standards, Design and Methodology. A recipient of numerous national awards and fellowships, he was also a member of The Future of NAEP panel, to which he was appointed by the commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics.

  • Terry Mazany (Chicago – general public representative): Selected as chair of the Governing Board in 2014 and serving as a member since 2012, Mazany is the president and CEO of The Chicago Community Trust, one of the nation’s largest community foundations that recently celebrated its 100th anniversary serving the residents of metropolitan Chicago.

  • Jeanette Nuñez (Miami – Republican state legislator): Nuñez has served as Florida’s state representative for District 119 since 2012 and represented District 112 from 2010 to 2012. Before being elected to the state legislature, Nuñez received various accolades for her community service, including being named in 2007 as a Hispanic Woman of Distinction of South Florida for her volunteerism and dedication to her community.

  • Joseph O’Keefe (New York City – nonpublic school administrator or policymaker): O’Keefe, a Jesuit priest and visiting professor at Fordham University, has been a leader in the Catholic education community and a scholar of faith-related schools in the U.S. and abroad, with several faculty appointments. He has been a Governing Board member since 2012.

  • Alice Peisch (Wellesley, Massachusetts – Democratic state legislator): Peisch serves as the state representative for Massachusetts’ 14th Norfolk District and as the Joint Committee on Education’s House chair, a post she has held since 2011. In her role as chair, Peisch works on matters relating to education, from birth through grade 12.

These members take office as the Governing Board is involved in several important initiatives, including releasing the 2015 NAEP Science Assessment results in late October 2016, developing a strategic vision to expand the visibility and influence of NAEP and releasing the 2016 NAEP Arts Assessment results in spring 2017.

"These dedicated individuals are exactly the kind of members we need at the forefront of assessment innovation,” Governing Board Chair Terry Mazany said. “We look forward to collaborating with them over the next four years."

The Governing Board is now accepting nominations for terms that begin October 2017 for these open positions: an elementary school principal, two general public representatives and a testing and measurement expert. To learn more and submit a nomination, visit Nominations are due by Oct. 28, 2016.

Download the PDF format of this release

Stephaan Harris