In 2000, A Group Of Parents From Silicon Valley Asked:

“WHAT HAPPENED?” WHAT HAPPENED
TO THE AMERICAN PUBLIC HIGH SCHOOL?
AND WHAT CAN WE DO TO FIX IT?

WHO WE ARE • Organizational Leadership

Diane Tavenner
Chief Executive Officer

Diane Tavenner is the Founder and CEO of Summit Public Schools (SPS), a leading charter management organization serving California and Washington State. Summit’s graduates are completing four-year college degrees at twice the national average. Newsweek and US News & World Report have ranked Summit among the top public schools in the nation. In partnership with Facebook, Summit is currently working to scale personalized learning by making its Personalized Learning Platform (PLP) available to schools across the country for free through the Summit Basecamp program.

Diane serves as the Board Chair of the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) representing the majority of California’s 1,300+ charter schools. Diane also serves on the board of Transcend, The Primary School and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning. Diane is a member of the Spring 2013 cohort of the Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship, a leadership program within the Aspen Institute and a fellow in the Broad Academy.

Prior to Summit, Diane was a public school teacher, administrator and leader in traditional urban and suburban public schools throughout California. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and sociology from the University of Southern California and a master’s degree in administration and policy analysis from Stanford University.

Mira Browne
Chief External Officer

Mira joined Summit Public Schools in 2012 and serves as its Chief External Officer. She leads Summit’s External Engagement team, which includes communications, marketing and external relations for Summit Learning. The team raises awareness for Summit Learning, and is dedicated to creating the conditions that allow more students to have a Summit Learning experience. Mira helped to launch, and continues to support the Summit Learning Program, which helps teachers bring personalized learning into their classrooms and currently includes over 100 partner schools from 27 states and the District of Columbia. Previously, she led Summit’s development, communications and strategic partnerships work. Prior to Summit, Mira worked with Larson Communications, a firm focused on public education reform. She worked with public charter schools and education reform organizations nationwide to raise visibility around their tireless efforts to educate underserved students and eliminate the achievement gap. Through this work, Mira discovered a real passion, and joy, in helping to realize the promise of public education for all students. Mira brings a diverse background in nonprofit and government communications, having worked in the administration of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg in New York City, and a nonprofit focused on civic and political engagement for Arab Americans. Mira previously served on the Advisory Board for the Silicon Valley New Leaders Council, as well as the Equity Advisory Committee of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission. She holds a B.A from the George Washington University.

Adam Carter
Chief Academic Officer

Adam began his career in public education as a high school English teacher, receiving the CAAE’s Outstanding New Teacher Award. In 2003, he became the founding English teacher at Summit Preparatory Charter School. He has taught in schools in Indonesia and Argentina, and he founded and directed the Innovative Schools Programme with an NGO in Jakarta. Adam returned to Summit in 2011 where, in his role as Chief Academic Officer, he leads Summit’s Academics and R&D Team, which works tirelessly to ensure that students and educators across the nation have the tools and support they need to be empowered, self-directed learners. Adam holds a B.A. from Presbyterian College and an M.A. from Stanford University.

Lizzie Choi
Chief Program Officer

Since joining Summit Public Schools as an algebra teacher, Lizzie has experimented with a variety of innovations, from technology-based resources to standards-based grading. She left the classroom in 2012 to project manage Summit's Optimized personalized learning pilot and project managed the implementation of our personalized learning model across the organization. She now leads the Summit Basecamp Program, which is a free program that provides the tools, resources and support needed to bring personalized learning to schools across the country. She is invested in putting the student at the center of the innovation process and excited about reimagining the high school experience for students. Lizzie received her BA in Public Policy, with an emphasis on Education Policy, from Stanford University and her MA from the Stanford Teacher Education Program.

Andrew Goldin
Chief of Schools

Andrew started his career teaching middle school science in the Bronx, New York as a Teach for America corps member. He later joined YES Prep Public Schools in Houston, Texas as the principal of two YES campuses and later a manager of school leaders. In his role as Chief of Schools at Summit, he supports site directors across the network. Andrew holds a BA from the University of Pennsylvania, a MSEd from Bank Street College of Education and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.

Kristen McCaw
Chief Operating Officer
& Chief Diversity Officer

Prior to her current role at Summit, Kristen served as Chief of Staff and led Summit's Growth Team. Before joining Summit, Kristen worked at the California Charter Schools Association where she supported the launch of new schools. Kristen has also managed special education and assessments at a network of charter schools in Harlem, led the implementation of systems to improve teacher and student performance, evaluated school-transformation policies, and launched college preparation programs for students in public housing. Kristen holds a B.A. in Politics from New York University and an M.P.A. from the University of Southern California. Kristen is a member of the Spring 2016 cohort of the Pahara Institute's NextGen Fellowship.

Joyce Montgomery
Chief Financial Officer

A passion for public education and impressive finance, forecasting and resourcing skills has brought Ms. Montgomery to the Summit public school’s team. Ms. Montgomery has over 8 years in the charter school finance industry and over 20 years in education finance. Prior to joining Summit, Ms. Montgomery spent 2.5 years at the Charter School Development Center (CSDC) working with Eric Premack as the Education Finance Policy Specialist. During her tenure at CSDC Ms. Montgomery managed and lead the Charter School Business Officer Training Program, a program dedicated to training individuals to serve as Chief Business Officers. In addition to leading and managing the CBO program, Ms. Montgomery helped scores of charter school by providing in depth reviews of their programs, interceding and supporting and defending charters during the chartering, appeal and revocation processes, assisting with developing policies and providing executive search functions for charter schools recruiting Chief Financial Officers. Prior to CSDC Ms. Montgomery was the first CFO of Leadership Public Schools, a well-established CMO network located in the San Francisco East Bay Area. Ms. Montgomery developed and still moderates a bay-area centric group of Charter School Business Officers who meet on a regular basis to discuss challenges, problems and develop best practices. Prior positions had Ms. Montgomery serving as CFO in the private school sector managing the finances, operations, and facilities for the Howard School in Atlanta, Georgia and Crystal Springs Uplands School in Hillsborough CA. Ms. Montgomery has an M.B.A in Finance receiving the Dean’s award (Sigma Beta Delta induction, Who’s Who of American Colleges and Universities) from Notre Dame de Namur’s University, B.A from CSU Long Beach (Magna Cum Laude) and an A.A. from Skyline Community College (with Highest Honors) In addition to her education, finance and operations background, she also has senior management experience in advertising, technology and banking. Ms. Montgomery is active in many community organizations and served as the Chair of the Finance Commission for the City of Belmont.

Jason Solomon
Chief Legal Counsel /
Senior Director of
Advocacy & Engagement

Jason joins Summit as Chief Legal Counsel, and Senior Director of Advocacy and Engagement for the schools, after more than a decade in higher education. Most recently, he was Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Stanford Law School, and earlier served as Chief of Staff and Counselor to the President at Harvard University. From 2005-2013, he was a law professor at William and Mary and the University of Georgia. Before going into education, he worked in politics and government, including as an aide at the White House and U.S. Treasury Department, on statewide and national political campaigns, and as a law clerk to two federal judges. He is a graduate of Harvard College and Columbia Law School.

Sam Strasser
Chief Information Officer

Sam joined Summit to design and build the Personalized Learning Platform (PLP) in 2013. After a few years working on the PLP at Facebook as both a software engineer and product manager, he is now the Chief Information Officer at Summit and leads the Analytics team. Before Summit, he co-founded Junyo and worked at several other education technology startups. He graduated Yale University with a BS in Computer Science.

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