DOE Leadership and Offices

Chancellor Richard A. Carranza

NYC Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza

Richard A. Carranza is Chancellor of the New York City Department of Education, the largest school system in the nation. He is responsible for educating 1.1 million students in over 1,800 schools. During Carranza’s nearly 30 years in education, he has served in virtually every role. Prior to New York City, he was the superintendent of the Houston Independent School District, the largest school district in Texas, the seventh largest in the United States. Before that, he served the San Francisco Unified School District, first as deputy superintendent and then as superintendent. He began his career as a high school, bilingual social studies and music teacher, and then as a principal, both in Tucson, Arizona.

Chief of Staff, Edie Sharp

Edie SharpEdie Sharp is Chancellor Richard Carranza’s Chief of Staff. In that role, Edie manages day-to-day operations within the Chancellor’s executive office, developing and implementing the goals and objectives of the DOE while serving as a key policy advisor to the Chancellor. Edie is also chief liaison to City Hall. Edie previously served as Deputy Chief of Staff to former Chancellor Carmen Fariña. Before joining the DOE in 2016, Edie was a Senior Policy Advisor to First Deputy Mayor Anthony Shorris, focusing on the Department of Education, the Office of Labor Relations, and the City University of New York. Before that, she was a Special Assistant to Mayor Bill de Blasio and a Senior Policy Associate in the Office of the Public Advocate. Edie has also worked as a field researcher in Uganda, where she partnered with community leaders to support the development of local affordable housing.

First Deputy Chancellor, Cheryl Watson-Harris

Cheryl Watson HarrisCheryl Watson-Harris is First Deputy Chancellor. In this newly created role, Cheryl manages the Executive Superintendents while leading the support and supervision system to pursue the DOE’s instructional vision. Before becoming First Deputy Chancellor, Cheryl served since 2017 as Senior Executive Director of the Office of Field Support. She is a New York City native and public school graduate who started her teaching career in 1993 at Brooklyn’s PS 81, served as a principal in Boston for 15 years, and was a Network Superintendent for Boston Public Schools from 2013 to 2015. She rejoined the DOE in 2015 as the first Executive Director of the Brooklyn South Field Support Center.

Chief Operating Officer, Ursulina Ramirez

Ursulina RamirezUrsulina Ramirez is Chief Operating Officer, a position she has held since 2016. Previously she was Chief of Staff to Chancellor Carmen Farina. Ursulina has been instrumental in creating policy and programs that help all public school students, including the expansion of Pre-k for All. Ursulina began her work in New York City government as the Deputy Public Advocate and Senior Policy Advisor to Mayor Bill de Blasio when he was Public Advocate. Previously she was the Senior Policy Analyst at the Committee for Hispanic Children and Families, where she advocated for increased access to quality early childhood education in New York City’s Latino communities. Ursulina began her career in direct service as a child care worker at a residential treatment facility for severely emotionally disturbed youth, and later as an advisor to first-generation college students.

General Counsel, Howard Friedman

Howard FriedmanHoward Friedman is General Counsel, representing and advising the DOE on all legal matters, including general practice issues, labor and employment matters, equal opportunity, employee discipline, special education, administrative/state/federal law and compliance, and commercial transactions. Prior to joining the DOE in 2016, Friedman served as the Chief of the Contracts and Real Estate Division of the New York City Law Department, where he counseled City agencies and the Mayor’s Office on transactional matters and special projects. Friedman joined the Contracts and Real Estate Division in 1998, became Deputy Chief in 2004, and then Chief in 2015. Prior to joining the Law Department, Friedman worked as a staff attorney for the Legal Aid Society, where he first worked in the Criminal Appeals Bureau, and then in the Civil Division serving Harlem.

Deputy Chancellor of School Planning and Development, Karin Goldmark

Karin GoldmarkKarin Goldmark is Deputy Chancellor for School Planning and Development, overseeing the Education Construction Fund, the development of new schools, school design, coordination with charter as well as non-public schools, district planning, space management, and the impartial hearings office. Before becoming Deputy Chancellor, Karin served as Senior Education Advisor to First Deputy Mayors Dean Fuleihan and Anthony Shorris. Karin began her career as a teacher and previously worked at the College Summit and the NYC Leadership Academy as well as the DOE.

Deputy Chancellor of School Climate and Wellness, LaShawn Robinson

LaShawn RibinsonLaShawn Robinson is the Deputy Chancellor for School Climate & Wellness, leading the DOE’s efforts to provide such student support services as safety, social and emotional wellness, mental health, medical care, community school initiatives, and guidance counseling. LaShawn most recently served as Executive Superintendent of the Office of Equity and Access, leading Advanced Placement for All, the DREAM-Specialized High Schools Institute, and College Access for All-Middle School. Robinson previously served as Superintendent of Transfer Schools from 2014 to 2016, Executive Director of the Advanced Placement Expansion Initiative from 2013 to 2014, and Principal of Brownsville Academy from 2008 to 2013.

Deputy Chancellor of Early Childhood and Enrollment, Josh Wallack

Josh WallackJosh Wallack is Deputy Chancellor for Early Childhood Education and Student Enrollment. In this role, Josh oversees the Department’s early education work, including the 3-K for All, Pre-K for All and Universal Literacy initiatives, as well as the Office of Student Enrollment, which manages admissions from Pre-K through high school as well as efforts to advance school diversity and equity. Previously, Josh was Deputy Chancellor of Strategy and Policy, responsible for overseeing the implementation of New York City’s Pre-K for All initiative. He also served as the Department’s Chief Strategy Officer. Before joining the Department of Education, Josh was Vice President for Early Childhood at the Children’s Aid Society, and Chief Operating Officer for the New York City Economic Development Corporation

Chief Academic Officer, Linda P. Chen

Linda ChenLinda P. Chen is Chief Academic Officer, overseeing instructional supports for all learners and managing the Divisions of Teaching and Learning, Special Education, and English Language Learners. Before returning to the NYC Department of Education under Chancellor Carranza, Linda served as Vice President for Engagement and Implementation at the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship. Before that, Linda served as Chief Academic Officer of Baltimore City Public Schools, Deputy Chief Academic Officer of Boston Public Schools, and Assistant Superintendent and Deputy Chief of Teaching and Learning in the School District of Philadelphia. Prior to her leadership roles in Philadelphia, Linda served as principal of PS 165 in Manhattan, literacy supervisor in Queens, and an elementary school teacher at PS 163 in Manhattan. She began her career teaching elementary school in Seattle.

Deputy Chancellor of Community Empowerment, Partnerships, and Communications

Adrienne Austin is the Acting Interim Deputy Chancellor for Community Empowerment, Partnerships, and Communications. She leads the DOE’s work to empower families and communities, while increasing the public’s understanding of key policies to deepen support for them. The division includes the departments of Family and Community Empowerment, communications, press, marketing and branding, community affairs, intergovernmental affairs, and translation and interpretation services.

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