The Pre-K–12 Education, Higher Education and Learning Science Research selection committees are made up of a dynamic and innovative group of individuals in academia. Under the leadership of a lead juror, each jury reviews the nominees and puts forward a recommendation of three finalists.
Consultant and Former Program Director for Latin American and the Caribbean, Global Fund for Women
For more than 15 years, Valeria Brabata, PhD, has been a senior consultant for the MacArthur Foundation, the WK Kellogg Foundation, the HIV/AIDS Alliance, International Planned Parenthood Federation and the Mexican Ministry of Health. As program director for Latin American and the Caribbean, Brabata provides vision and leadership to the organization’s strategies and leads the grant-making program in the region, supporting hundreds of women organizations.
Superintendent of Miami-Dade Public Schools
2016 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
Alberto Carvalho is superintendent of the fourth largest school system in the United States. He has been widely recognized for his work in changing the digital landscape of learning in the classroom, improving student outcomes and guiding his district back to financial health. In 2014, Carvalho was named National Superintendent of the Year for these efforts.
Founder and Principal, Vaughn Next Century Learning Center
1996 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
As principal of the Vaughn Next Century Learning Center in San Fernando, formerly Vaughn Street Elementary, Yvonne Chan, EdD, transformed the school to become the first conversion charter school in the nation. While principal, Chan dramatically increased academic achievement among the school’s mostly low-income, predominantly minority student body. She was instrumental in developing capital improvement projects, improving drug awareness and prevention and creating a social services center offering vaccinations, childcare, job training and legal aid.
2003 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
Mark Edwards, EdD, was the former superintendent for the Mooresville Graded School District in North Carolina, and is considered the pioneer in 1:1 computing in public schools. Edwards was named the 2013 National Superintendent of the Year by the American Association of School Administrators, 2013 North Carolina Superintendent of the Year and is author of Every Child, Every Day: A Digital Conversion Model for Student Achievement.
Co-Director, Kennedy Krieger Institute Presidential Scholar, Towson University
2000 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
As Maryland’s first female state superintendent of schools, Nancy Grasmick, PhD, is known for her strong focus on student achievement, teacher quality and public school funding. Grasmick’s 20-year tenure includes instituting an explicit pre-K-12 curriculum, developing statewide assessments, and holding schools and school systems accountable.
Former President, Institute for Student Achievement, Board Director
1999 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
Gerry House, EdD, was president of the Institute for Student Achievement, a nonprofit organization that partners with public school districts to transform underperforming high schools into academically rigorous schools that graduate students prepared for success in college. House previously spent 15 years as school superintendent in Memphis, Tennessee and Chapel Hill, North Carolina. In addition to being a McGraw Prize winner, House was named the 1999 National Superintendent of the Year by the American Association of School Administrators.
2012 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
John Merrow is an award-winning reporter who spent 41 years covering public education, the last 30 as Education Correspondent for the PBS NewsHour and host of his own series of PBS documentaries, “The Merrow Report.” He as authored several books on education and is an occasional contributor to the opinion pages of USA Today, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times and Education Week.
National Consultant, Senior Adviser, and Board Director
Linda Roberts, EdD, Founding Director of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Educational Technology from 1993 to January 2001, was the secretary of education’s special adviser on technology, where she developed the first National Technology Plan for the Clinton Administration. As a leading expert on educational technology, she serves on the boards of companies and research organizations, and works with governments, developers, and foundations to advance technology and learning.
Director for the Directorate of Education and Skills, The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
2014 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
Andreas Schleicher is director for education and skills and special advisor on education policy to the Secretary-General at the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris. Schleicher supports the Secretary-General’s strategy to produce analysis and policy advice that advances economic growth and social progress. He is the recipient of the Theodor Heuss prize for exemplary democratic engagement.
President and Principal, King’s College London
Edward Byrne, MD, DSc, is president and principal for King’s College London, one of the top 20 universities in the world, and a neuroscientist and clinician by background. Byrne joined King’s from Monash University in Australia, where he was president and vice chancellor. He established a new campus in Suzhou, China and fostered a major alliance with the University of Warwick in the UK.
Executive Director, Center for 21st Century Universities, Georgia Tech
Richard DeMillo, PhD, is the distinguished professor of computing and professor of management at Georgia Institute of Technology and the author of more than 100 articles, books and patents. He currently directs Georgia Tech’s Center for 21st Century Universities, a living laboratory devoted to fundamental change in higher education
President and CEO, The League for Innovation in the Community College
Rufus Glasper, Ph.D., is the President and CEO of the League for Innovation in the Community College, an international nonprofit organization with a mission to cultivate innovation in the community college environment. Dr. Glasper is also Chancellor Emeritus of the Maricopa Community Colleges, one of the nation’s largest multi-college community college systems. He served as chancellor from 2003 through February 2016, and overall held district leadership positions for three decades.
President and Vice-Chancellor, University of New South Wales
As the ninth president of the University of New South Wales, Ian Jacobs, MD, is a British academic, medical doctor and researcher. He was previously at University College of London, where he created and led the Institute for Women’s Health, was research director of UCL Partners and dean of faculty of biomedical sciences.
Superintendent and President, Santa Monica College
Kathryn Jeffery, Ph.D., possesses over three decades of diverse higher education experience. Prior to joining Santa Monica College, she served as the president of Sacramento City College and president of Hennepin Technical College. She is a passionate advocate for higher education, and one who takes pride in a student-centered approach to leadership and decision-making. Throughout her career, she has championed the development of community college curriculum, programs, and services that promote student access, persistence, and success.
Chief Officer, ACT Center for Equity in Learning
Jim Larimore leads ACT’s strategy to close gaps in equity and achievement through programs, research and partnerships. Prior to ACT, Jim served on the postsecondary success team at the Gates Foundation, and as a student affairs leader at campuses including Stanford, Dartmouth, Swarthmore and NYU Abu Dhabi. Jim served on the Advisory Council for the Gates Millennium Scholars Program, and now serves on advisory boards for the Aspen Forum for Community Solutions Advisory Council, the UNCF Career Planning Initiative, and the Universidad de Monterrey in Monterrey, Mexico.
President, The University of Texas at El Paso
1997 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize Winner
Diana Natalicio, PhD, is the first woman president of the University of Texas at El Paso and holds the longest tenure at the head of a Texas public university. Under her leadership, UTEP’s annual budget has increased from $65 million to nearly $450 million.
Author, Columnist and Speaker
Jeff Selingo is a best-selling author and award-winning columnist who helps parents and higher-education leaders imagine the college and university of the future and how to succeed in a fast-changing economy. A regular contributor to The Washington Post, Selingo is a special advisor and professor of practice at Arizona State University and a visiting scholar at Georgia Tech’s Center for 21st Century Universities.
President, Bennington College
Mariko Silver is the 10th president of Bennington College, a liberal arts college distinguished for its groundbreaking approaches to student-centered, work-integrated learning. Dr. Silver served in the Obama administration as Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Policy of the United States Department of Homeland Security. Prior to this appointment, Silver was senior advisor to the president of Arizona State University (ASU). She held roles at Columbia University and in the administration of Arizona governor Janet Napolitano.
Founding Dean, Indian School Business; Founder and Trustee, Ashoka University, India
Pramath Raj Sinha, MSE, PhD, is founder and managing director of 9.9 Mediaworx and also the senior counselor of the Albright Stonebridge Group, India. Pramath helped setup and served as founding dean of the Indian School of Business and is now involved in setting up an acclaimed new liberal arts university – Ashoka University – as well as a “reimagined” MBA-program for women called the Vedica Scholars Programme for Women.
Executive Director, The Charles A. Dana Center, The University of Texas at Austin
Philip Uri Treisman, PhD, is professor of mathematics and of public affairs at the University of Texas Austin and founder and executive director of the University’s Charles A. Dana Center, an organized research unit of the College of Natural Sciences. Uri has received numerous honors and awards for his efforts to improve American education.
Vice Dean Emeritus, Online Learning at NYU School of Engineering, NYU
Robert Ubell is Vice Dean Emeritus, Online Learning at NYU School of Engineering and previously headed the school’s e-learning unit, NYU Tandon Online. He is a recipient of the A. Frank Mayadas Leadership Award and has participated in numerous corporate and nonprofit boards, including the National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council and National Academy of Engineering. He has been the principal investigator of nearly $3 million in grants from the National Science Foundation, Sloan Foundation, IEEE Foundation and McGraw-Hill Education, among other sources.
Associate Professor, Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania
Dr. Baker’s research focuses on how students use and learn from educational games, intelligent tutors and other kinds of educational software. He draws on the fields of educational data mining, learning analytics and human-computer interaction to develop methods for mining the data in order to improve our understanding of how students respond to educational software, and how these responses influence their learning. Prior to coming to Penn, Ryan Baker, PhD, served as an associate professor in the Department of Human Development at Teachers College, Columbia University and as founding president of the International Educational Data Mining Society, where he currently serves on the board of directors.
Senior Advisor to the Chancellor and Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Dr. Feldman has authored several introductory psychology texts and published extensively on how social psychological factors impact educational practice. His research has been supported by grants from the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Disabilities and Rehabilitation Research. He is a winner of the College Distinguished Teacher Award and is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He also is past president of the Federation of Associations in Behavioral and Brain Sciences Foundation, which advocates for the social sciences.
President of Teachers College, Columbia University and Founding Director and Chair of the Management Committee of the CPRE
Dr. Fuhrman’s work focuses on enhancing the quality of education research, accountability in education, intergovernmental relationships and standards-based reform, and she has written widely on education policy and finance. Her leadership track record includes her 10-year-term as Dean of the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education, where she was influential in creating a new university-assisted public school as part of Penn’s West Philadelphia improvement initiative. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Hawn Foundation, is a Trustee of the Committee on Economic Development, and is a member of the Board of Governors of the Pardee RAND Graduate School.
Professor of Psychology and Senior Researcher at the Institute for Intelligent Systems, University of Memphis, Visiting Professor, China Normal University
Dr. Hu is the Director of the University of Memphis Partnership Lab of Advanced Distributed Learning, and senior researcher in the Chinese Ministry of Education’s Key Laboratory of Adolescent Cyberpsychology and Behavior at CCNU.Dr. Hu's primary research areas include Mathematical Psychology, Research Design and Statistics and Cognitive Psychology. Dr. Hu received funding for his research from the U.S. National Science Foundation, U.S. Institute for Education Sciences, ADL of the US Department of Defense, U.S. Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity, U.S. Army Research Laboratories, U.S. Office of Naval Research, UofM and CCNU.
Pro Vice-Chancellor and Professor, Learning and Teaching, Taylor's University, Malaysia
Professor Michael Keppell came to Taylor’s University after having served as the Pro Vice-Chancellor of Learning Transformations at Swinburne University of Technology. A specialist in designed-based research and innovation for large-scale transformations, he focuses on producing learning design that elevates teaching effectiveness integrated with educational environment change. He has held also held leadership roles at the University of Southern Queensland, Charles Sturt University, and The Education University of Hong Kong.
Professor of Learner Centred Design, UCL Knowledge Lab
Dr. Rose Luckin is Professor of Learner Centred Design at UCL Knowledge Lab in London and Director of EDUCATE: a London hub for edtech start-ups, researchers, educators, learners and parents to work together on the development of evidence0based edtech. Her research involves the design and evaluation of educational technology using theories from the learning sciences and techniques from artificial intelligence. She has advised research councils in various countries and has written widely about educational technologies.
Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Physics, Astronomy, and Education at the University of Michigan
McKay’s team has applied observational and experimental Data Science methods to both cosmology and education. They have probed the growth of cosmic structure as well as the expansion history of the Universe, especially through studies of galaxy clusters and gravitational lensing. In higher education, McKay’s team uses the rich data produced by digitally mediated education to better understand learning, improve student outcomes, and ensure institutional equity.
Assistant Professor, Department of Neurology, UC San Francisco
Dr. Melina Uncapher leads the UCSF Department of Neurology’s educational neuroscience efforts as Director of Education for Neuroscape, a new center that aims to bridge neuroscience and technology. Having spent 16 years at the forefront of learning neuroscience, she now applies research to solve real-world problems in education and technology. She also leads a multi-university National Science Foundation-funded network studying how executive function contributes to academic achievement. She co-founded and is CEO of Institute for Applied Neuroscience. She is a MacArthur Scholar and her work has been highlighted in media outlets such as the New York Times, PBS and Frontline.