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(April 6, 2017, Washington, D.C.) – As Dr. Sharon P. Robinson nears the end of her 12-year tenure as president and chief executive officer of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), the organization celebrates her leadership and contributions to the field.
Robinson, who plans to retire later this year, has led AACTE in advocating and building capacity for high-quality educator preparation programs across the nation to serve diverse learners. She has successfully directed efforts and forged partnerships to professionalize the field of teaching, raise educator quality, and work with legislators to implement policies that advance research-driven innovations and equity for all students.
“Dr. Robinson is a selfless visionary,” said AACTE Board of Directors Chair Dr. Renée A. Middleton. “She has always thought about not only where does AACTE need to be today, but where do we need to be tomorrow, and how do we plan for where education needs to be?”
As a lifelong advocate for civil rights, Robinson has strengthened AACTE’s voice as a champion for preparing educators with the understanding and pedagogical skills to teach all learners. She led the development of programs and resources to address persistent challenges facing the profession, such as the recruitment and retention of racially diverse teachers. The AACTE Holmes Program, which supports students from historically underrepresented backgrounds pursuing careers in education, now reaches participants from high school through graduate school, and a new Networked Improvement Community is studying strategies to bring more Black and Hispanic/Latino men into the teaching profession.
Robinson has raised the bar for teacher preparedness and program quality by spurring new quality assurance initiatives, including the profession-driven development of a valid and reliable, nationally available performance assessment for teacher candidates. She also has presented an unwavering commitment to creating a unified accreditor for the educator preparation field.
Throughout her tenure, Robinson ensured the Association’s value proposition met the needs of its members by continually improving services, broadening the offerings of the Annual Meeting, and launching the Innovation Exchange to highlight and celebrate innovative practices in the profession. Her personal warmth and political savvy combined to sustain a rich network of strategic partnerships in Washington and beyond, supporting AACTE and the educator preparation field in numerous ways – including in the recent legislative victory that rescinded the federal teacher preparation regulations after a six-year effort.
“We have come a long way as a field, and as an association, under Robinson’s leadership,” Middleton said. “I want to thank her for her service and the path she has forged over the last decade and beyond. It’s the right path – and we must continue on it.”
AACTE will honor Robinson with a series of tribute videos to recognize her dedication and leadership throughout the month of April.
About AACTE: The Leading Voice on Educator Preparation
The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education is a national alliance of educator preparation programs dedicated to high-quality, evidence-based preparation that assures educators are profession-ready as they enter the classroom. The over 800 member institutions include public and private colleges and universities in every state, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and Guam. Through advocacy and capacity building, AACTE promotes innovation and effective practices that strengthen educator preparation. Learn more at www.aacte.org.