Alumni of the Danforth Educational Leadership Program have a powerful bond that comes from their shared experience in a cohort-based program that is deeply rooted in the core values of equity and excellence and centered on a tightly integrated curriculum and internship. It is an intense program that shapes who they are as educators and leaders and guides them in their everyday work and long-term efforts to ensure that all children receive a quality education.
See our searchable list of Danforth alumni, organized by year, for details on the professional roles of our graduates. If you are missing from the list or want to update your information, please email us.
Below are links to interviews with some of these Danforth leaders. They work at different school levels and are at various stages in their careers, but they are united by their Danforth experience.
Ra’Jeanna Conerly graduated from the Danforth program in 2015 and was recently hired as assistant principal at Valhalla Elementary in Federal Way. In this interview, Ra’Jeanna talks about what she learned in the program and how it helped her advance her career in education.
Kathy Myers was a middle school math and science teacher in Seattle when she decided to enroll in the Danforth Educational Leadership Program. Right after completing the program, Kathy was hired as principal of Lake Hills Elementary in Bellevue. In this interview, she talks about how the Danforth experience shaped her views on education and leadership and continues to guide her in her new position.
In his work as a dean of students and counselor in the Bellevue School District, educator Hunter Sissom was struck by the wide disparity of opportunities available to students with different socioeconomic backgrounds. An administrator in Bellevue encouraged him to look into the Danforth Educational Leadership Program, and Sissom found that the program’s guiding principles of equity and change resonated with his personal values.
Duke Truong and his family moved from Vietnam to Seattle when he was in the fourth grade, at a time when ESL school programs were in their infancy. Truong, who is of Chinese ethnicity, had trouble adjusting to the language, culture and schooling of his adopted country; he was actually expelled from middle school at one point. Encouragement from a few teachers and an administrator during those difficult times played a crucial role in his later decision to become an educator, with a focus on helping disadvantaged and marginalized youth.
Jennifer Wiley was considering a career as a civil rights lawyer when she discovered the Danforth program and its mission-driven curriculum, which compelled her to go into educational leadership. In this interview, Wiley discusses her belief in public education as an important conduit of democracy and how this belief was actualized by her experience in the Danforth program.
After seven years as an assistant principal, Mia Williams secured her self-described dream job as principal of Aki Kurose Middle School in 2008. The school has received several local and national awards under the leadership of Williams, who explains in this interview how the core values of the Danforth program helped shape her as an administrator and still guide her day-to-day work.