NEW YORK, April 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- PENCIL, one of New York's leading education nonprofits, today announced the appointment of David Weiner, formerly Deputy Chancellor at New York City's Department of Education (DOE), as its new President. His charge will be to deepen and expand PENCIL's growing role in improving the city's public schools by drawing on the vast talent and expertise of NYC's business community and its leadership.
Mr. Weiner, a former public school principal, was formerly Deputy Chancellor for Talent, Labor and Innovation at DOE, where he spearheaded the system's groundbreaking iZone program. iZone implemented 21st century learning practices in City schools and brought technology leaders and educators together to better prepare students for college and careers.
He will apply that experience to PENCIL, which has helped to fuel the national movement of private-public partnerships at public schools since its founding in 1995. Originally known primarily for its annual "Principal for a Day" activities, PENCIL has refined its model in recent years and today operates year-round programs targeting the intersection of school needs and business expertise in such critical areas as school leadership, college and career readiness, and family engagement. The organization has been at the forefront of the workforce development issue through PENCIL Fellows, which provides over 100 NYC high school students with professional training and hands-on experience through paid summer internships at local businesses each year.
PENCIL's programs have a demonstrated impact across the city, operating in more than 300 schools that serve over 200,000 students annually: More than 90% of principals engaged in strategic, long-term school-business partnerships said their PENCIL Partnership helped improve their school climate and/or student performance last year. And 98% of 2013 PENCIL Fellows say their experience influenced their future academic or career plans.
"I am honored and excited to have the opportunity to lead this dynamic organization as President of PENCIL," said Mr. Weiner. "As a teacher, principal, and education policy maker, I have seen first-hand that PENCIL's models of school partnerships are in the forefront of education reform. I am looking forward to working with my new PENCIL colleagues and with our Board and partners to expand and increase PENCIL's work to impact as many students, families, teachers, and principals as possible."
"David has unparalleled education experience, having worked at nearly every level in public education," said PENCIL Board of Directors Chair Howard Chatzinoff, a partner at Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP. "As an educator, he understands the critical need for PENCIL's proven models of school-business partnerships, and recognizes that they represent an incredibly effective way to transform public education. David's unique blend of on-the-ground experience and track record of finding and championing innovative new programs make him the perfect fit for PENCIL. On behalf of our Board of Directors, I am delighted to welcome him."
"I have had the privilege of working with both David and with PENCIL for many years," said New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina. "Our schools benefit enormously from the work of its school-business partners. I am thrilled to see such a capable leader taking the helm of an organization that is finding new and innovative ways to support our teachers, principals, families, and students."
"David is one of New York's education policy trailblazers," said Dr. John King, Commissioner of the New York State Education Department. "He will bring a dynamic approach to improving our schools through his leadership of this important organization."
Mr. Weiner's appointment follows the departure of Michael Haberman, PENCIL's president for the last seven years, who left the organization in January to join JPMorgan Chase's Global Philanthropy team as Managing Director for the Northeast Region. David succeeds Interim Executive Director Richard Burns, who has served in that capacity since January.
Prior to his work at DOE, Mr. Weiner served as Chief Academic Officer and Associate Superintendent of Academics for the School District of Philadelphia from 2008 to 2011. He was a principal in Brooklyn and in San Francisco from 2001 to 2008, and prior to that worked as an elementary school teacher. He resides in Brooklyn with his wife and daughter.
Founded in 1995, PENCIL is the leader in creating innovative and impactful models of collaboration between business and public schools. Working at the intersection of school needs and business expertise, we channel the best ideas, talent, and skills across sectors to improve school and student performance. Visit PENCIL.org for more information.