Linda Brown

Founder and CEO


Sue Walsh

Senior Director, Leadership Development and The Fellowship



Shawna Wells

Director, The Network



Paul Adler

Director, Leadership Development



Katie Dankleff

Director, Leadership Development



Jill Dunchick

Director, Leadership Development



Krista Heraty

Director, Programs



Stephanie Morgan Patton

Director, Leadership Development



Nanette Robicheau

Director, Board Governance



Jeremy Stryer

Director, Operations



The Building Excellent Schools Board of Directors is pleased to announce the launch of the search for its next Executive Director. To assist with this transition, the board is partnering with Bellwether Education Partners, a nonprofit consulting and executive search firm focused exclusively on K-12 education.

We are excited to tell the story of BES and the vision for its next chapter. In that spirit, we welcome inquiries, ideas, and expressions of interest.

Click here for the Executive Director job description.

Click here to see all open positions at BES.

Board of Directors

Linda Brown

A leading charter school supporter, Linda Brown views charter schools as the engine that drives all schools to higher standards. She works along with education entrepreneurs as they break new ground in education reform. Ms. Brown founded Building Excellent Schools in 1993, and her work has been critical to the success of charter schools not only in Massachusetts but across the country. In addition to acting as the organization’s lead fund developer, Ms. Brown also works one-on-one with Fellows on issues related to governance, fund development and mission. Before founding Building Excellent Schools, Ms. Brown was Associate Head of School at an independent school in Massachusetts.

Mark Culliton

As Chief Executive Officer of College Bound Dorchester (formerly Federated Dorchester Neighborhood Houses), Mark Culliton is responsible for the organization’s financial, organizational, and programmatic strength. A Dorchester resident, Mr. Culliton brings extensive experience in leading educational endeavors in underresourced communities, having previously served as the first Executive Director of Upham’s Corner Main Street and as the Chief Operating Officer of BELL, a nonprofit organization that provides after-school and summer enrichment programs to 1,500 elementary school children in Boston, New York, and Washington, DC. Previously, he served as Vice President of Business Development for Lighthouse Academies, where he was responsible for developing new charter schools; he helped to grow the organization from one school serving 120 students into a network of schools that serves more than 2,300 students on nine campuses. Mr. Culliton was also the inaugural chair of the founding board of Boston Preparatory Charter Public School, founded by BES Fellow Scott McCue. Mr. Culliton holds a B.A. in History from the University of Michigan and an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management.

Stephen Kramer

Stephen Kramer is widely considered a thought leader in the field of education with particular expertise in grades K-12 and the transition to college. He serves as the Managing Director of the European division of Bright Horizons. Mr. Kramer has overall responsibility for Bright Horizons operations and growth in the United Kingdom and Ireland; he recently transitioned from a leadership role at the parent company based in the United States. Before joining Bright Horizons, Mr. Kramer founded and led College Coach, a leading education company that successfully partners with multinational companies, including AstraZeneca, IBM, Morgan Stanley and PepsiCo. His company was acquired by Bright Horizons in 2006. Previously, he initiated and led the education practice at Fidelity Ventures, the venture capital arm of Fidelity Investments. While at Fidelity Ventures, he invested in and consulted for a number of education service companies. Prior to his experience at Fidelity, Mr. Kramer was a consultant with Arthur D. Little, where he directed high-growth organizations in the areas of strategy and operations. He studied at the London School of Economics and graduated with highest distinction from Babson College and Harvard Business School.

Anita Landecker

Anita Landecker is Executive Director of ExED, a nonprofit organization that develops and manages public charter schools in inner-city neighborhoods in Southern California. Before joining ExED in 1999, Ms. Landecker was Regional Vice President for the western operations of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), the largest community development organization in the nation. During her 12 years at LISC, Ms. Landecker was also the Managing Director of the California Equity Fund (CEF), a LISC subsidiary, which syndicated the benefits of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit. While at LISC and CEF, she raised more than $500 million for investment in affordable housing in inner-city neighborhoods. She has taught at UCLA and the University of Southern California, and served on the Los Angeles Board of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco; she currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Community Foundation Land Trust, CDTech and Menorah Housing Foundation. Ms. Landecker earned an M.S. in urban planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a B.A. from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Steven Wilson

Steven Wilson is a Senior Fellow at Education Sector in Washington, D.C. He is a former Executive Vice President for Product Development at Edison Schools and Senior Fellow at the Center for Business and Government of the John F. Kennedy School of Government. His book, “Learning on the Job: When Business Takes on Public Schools,” examines the first decade of private management of public schools and was awarded the Virginia and Warren Stone Prize. Mr. Wilson founded and currently serves as CEO of Ascend Learning, a New York City-based nonprofit urban charter school management company. He was special assistant for strategic planning for Massachusetts Governor William Weld. He advised the governor on education policy during the passage and implementation of the commonwealth’s 1993 comprehensive education reform act. He also oversaw the administration’s privatization programs and drafted the governor’s plan to reorganize state government. Mr. Wilson’s earlier book, “Reinventing the Schools: A Radical Plan for Boston,” led to the establishment of the Massachusetts charter school law, which he drafted.

Shantelle D. Wright

Shantelle Wright is the Founder and Head of School of Achievement Preparatory Academy, a District of Columbia public charter school that opened its doors in 2008. Achievement Prep’s mission is to prepare students in grades 4-8 to excel as high-achieving scholars and leaders in high school, college, and beyond. In its first year of operation, Achievement Prep had some of the highest-performing students in the District, with 82 percent of its scholars scoring advanced or proficient in math on the 2009 DC CAS, and 100 percent of its 5th grade scholars scoring proficient or advanced.  As a top-rated Tier 1 public charter school, Achievement Prep scholars are twice as likely to be proficient in reading and math as other students in the District of Columbia.  Achievement Prep was founded as a direct result of Ms. Wright’s work as a Building Excellent Schools Fellow in 2006-2007. Before entering the Fellowship, she served as an administrator at an urban public charter school in Washington, DC. She also practiced commercial real estate law for several years in the District of Columbia. Ms. Wright holds a B.A. from Hampton University and a J.D. from the George Washington School of Law.

BES Adjunct Instructors

Building Excellent Schools (BES) and Excel Academy Charter Schools have announced a partnership to draw upon the expertise of top-performing Excel teachers in training school leaders from around the country through The Fellowship, The Network, and Weekend Warriors.

BES Adjunct Instructors are those Excel Academy staff members who have demonstrated academic leadership in their content area and grade level.  Specifically, their instructional leadership in the classroom has led to outstanding student achievement results, and their continuing leadership in the school has prepared them to train others on their practice-proven approaches. 

Kaitlyn Giles

Kaitlyn Giles joined Excel’s staff in 2012 and currently serves as Excel Academy-Orient Heights’ founding 5th grade math teacher. Prior to Excel, Ms. Giles taught middle school math and reading in Lawrence, MA for two years through Teach For America. Starting in the fall of 2015, Ms. Giles will be the Dean of Curriculum & Instruction at Excel Academy-Orient Heights. Ms. Giles holds a B.A. from Cornell University and an M.Ed. from Boston University.

Kendra Heinricher

Kendra Heinricher joined Excel’s staff in 2005 and currently serves as Excel AcademyEast Boston’s 8th grade math teacher as well as Excel’s Network Math Department Head. Ms. Heinricher-along with her fellow 8th grade teachers-was a 2014 recipient of the BES Gold Standard in Teaching award , given in recognition of their tremendous performance in pushing high levels of student achievement. For the last six years, Excel Academy – East Boston 8th graders have ranked in the top 5 of all 460 Massachusetts public schools in math.

Becca Moskowitz

Becca Moskowitz joined Excel’s staff in 2004 as Excel Academy – East Boston’s 7th grade English teacher. She continues to teach 7th grade and also serves as Excel’s Network English Department Head. Ms. Moskowitz returned to the classroom this year after taking a one year sabbatical to complete a graduate degree at Harvard University. Prior to attending Harvard, Ms. Moskowitz’s students were among the highest performers in Massachusetts in 7th grade English language arts, with over 95% scoring advanced/proficient for three consecutive years.

Brett Pangburn

Brett Pangburn joined Excel’s staff in 2006 as the 6th grade English teacher at Excel Academy – East Boston.  Brett has served as a Grade Level Team Chair for the 6th grade and currently serves as the 6th Grade Level Content Chair for the Excel network. Mr. Pangburn’s accomplishments in the classroom have been both locally and nationally recognized: TNTP named Mr. Pangburn a semi-finalist for the 2014 Fishman Prize, and he was selected by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) as a finalist for the 2016 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year. 

Sarah Savage

Sarah Savage joined Excel’s staff in 2012 as a 5th grade English teacher.For two years, she served as a high school English teacher and Chair of the English Department at an inner-city school serving low-income, at-risk youth through Teach For America. She holds a B.A. from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities and an instructional certification in high school English from East Carolina University.

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