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NSBA’s Council of Urban Boards of Education Announces 2015-2016 Leadership

March 26, 2015

Alexandria, Va. (March 26, 2015) - The National School Boards Association’s (NSBA) Council of Urban Boards of Education (CUBE) elected leaders and new members to its Steering Committee as part of NSBA’s 75th Annual Conference in Nashville, TN.

Van Henri White of New York’s Rochester City School District was elected Chair, and Harium Martin-Morris of Washington’s Seattle Public Schools was elected Vice Chair.

“I am honored and blessed to continue to serve as CUBE's Chair,” said White.  “During the coming year CUBE intends on continuing its efforts to design and support initiatives which ensure that there is excellence, equity, and unity in the public schools of this nation.  This work amounts to more than a program at conferences or webinar for CUBE.  Indeed this important work represents what is necessary to fulfill America's promise to all of it citizens.”

White is the President of the Board of Education in Rochester City School District, and has served on the school board since 2007. A legal and social advocate, White established the Center for the Study of Civil and Human rights Laws in Rochester to help promote diversity, tolerance, and community. He is also the author of Frustration in America, as well as Marching Forward by Looking Back: Fifty Years Since the March on Washington.

“I would like to thank the Steering Committee for electing me as Vice Chair,” said Martin-Morris. “The work ahead of us is even more challenging.  CUBE as a major voice in the public space, affords us a unique opportunity to educate and inform our fellow districts around the country that we are being successful in spite our problems. We need to remind the country that a good public education is indeed the great equalizer.”

Martin-Morris, a former classroom teacher, was elected to the Seattle School Board in 2007 and is a member of the school board’s Audit and Finance Committee. He is also the Chair of the Washington State School Directors Association’s Urban Suburban Task Force. Martin-Morris has served on the CUBE Steering Committee since 2009.

The following school board members were elected to serve on CUBE’s 16-member Steering Committee:

Steve Corona, Fort Wayne, Ind. - Corona is the Board Vice-President at Fort Wayne Community Schools, Indiana. Corona serves on the Fort Wayne, Indiana School Board where he is the longest serving member in the school district’s history, having served on the board since 1981.

Keith Sutton, Raleigh, N.C. - Sutton is the District 4 representative to the Wake County Board of Education. First appointed in 2009, and elected in 2011, Keith has served as his board’s vice chair and chair.  His experience includes extensive work in the areas of partnership management, diversity and inclusion, public affairs, and government and community relations.

Susan L. Valdes, Tampa, Fla. -  Valdes was elected to the Hillsborough County (Fla.) School Board (District 1) in 2004, and was re-elected in 2008 and 2012. Valdes served as School Board chair in 2010, and vice chair in 2009 and 2014. She is one of seven members responsible for making policy decisions and overseeing the 8th largest school district in the nation.

Martha Wilson, Camden, N.J. - Wilson is currently the Board of Education Vice-President for the Camden Advisory Board. She is also Chairperson of the District’s Parental Involvement Committee, and Communication and Technology Committee. Martha received Master Board Membership in 2014 from the New Jersey School Boards Association, and has been a certified member of the New Jersey School Boards Association since March 2002.

For more information on CUBE, please visit www.nsba.org/cube.

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The National School Boards Association (NSBA) is the leading advocate for public education and supports equity and excellence in public education through school board leadership. NSBA represents state school boards associations and their more than 90,000 local school board members throughout the U.S. Learn more at: www.nsba.org.

CUBE supports urban school boards and fosters effective leadership for excellence and equity in public education, with a specific focus on underrepresented students. CUBE provides educational opportunities that engage urban school districts and district leaders, working through their state school boards associations, while addressing challenges in urban centers. CUBE represents nearly 100 urban school districts in 35 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The districts that comprise CUBE educate nearly 7.5 million students in over 12,000 schools, with a collective budget of approximately $99 billion.

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