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Duncan Announces His Senior Staff Appointments

U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan today announced the following nine appointments to his senior staff. Get to know them: 

 Margot Rogers, Chief of Staff Margot Rogers comes to the Department of Education from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation where she most recently served as a special assistant to the director of education and managed the development of the foundation's five-year education strategy, working closely with the director on organizational development, strategy, and personnel. Prior to her tenure at Gates, Rogers served as an independent consultant providing education-related programs, policy, and strategy work for a variety of clients, including New American Schools, the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation, and the Gates Foundation. Rogers also worked for six years as a staff attorney at the Center for Law and Education, providing strategic guidance and content support for legal services and other attorneys around the country working on improving education for low-income students. Rogers also served as a senior program officer for the American Association of University Women Educational Foundation. Rogers received her master's degree in history from Emory University, her Juris Doctorate from the University of Virginia, and was a Rotary International Scholar at the University of Toronto. 

Juan Sepulveda, Director of the White House Initiative on the Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans Juan Sepulveda has been a senior executive, strategist, and advocate in the non-profit and philanthropic communities with a focus on community development, capacity building, and transformational management for over 20 years. Sepulveda comes to the Department of Education from The Common Enterprise (TCE) where he has been president since founding the organization in 1995 to help build stronger communities across America by making nonprofits, philanthropic organizations, governments, businesses, and communities more effective in their public work. Sepulveda has also worked at the Rockefeller Foundation, as a talk show host on KLRN, a biographer and a Latino voting rights advocate. Sepulveda received a B.A. in government from Harvard, a B.A. in politics, philosophy and economics as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University and a law degree from Stanford University. Sepulveda served as Texas state director for Obama for America. 

Judy Wurtzel, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development Judy Wurtzel comes to the department from The Aspen Institute, we she has served as co-director since 2005, helping local, state and national education leaders improve the education and life chances of poor and minority students. Prior to her tenure at the Aspen Institute, Wurtzel served as executive director of The Learning First Alliance, a partnership of leading national education associations formed to improve teaching and learning. Wurtzel also served as senior advisor to the deputy secretary at the U.S. Department of Education from 1993 to 1999 and as associate counsel to the president in the White Office of Presidential Personnel. Wurtzel received her B.A. in literature from Yale and a law degree from New York University. 

David Hoff, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Communication Development David Hoff has worked as a reporter in the education field for nearly 20 years, most recently serving as associate editor at Education Week, writing on issues facing K?12 education including school finance, assessment, and curriculum. Recently, Hoff founded and authored NCLB: Act II, a daily blog tracking issues related to the reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act and led the newspaper's coverage of both the Democratic and Republican nominating conventions. Hoff has regularly appeared on television and radio shows as an expert on federal education policies and spoken at education conferences. In addition to his work as a reporter at Ed Week, Hoff has been published in a variety of publications, including The Washington Post. Hoff received his B.A. in history from Hope College. 

John White, Press Secretary John White comes to the department from Prince George's County Public Schools where he served as a chief communications officer for the nation's 18th largest school district since 2004. Prior to his tenure in Prince George's County, White managed Public and Government Relations in Maryland for AAA Mid-Atlantic, and served as the director of communications for the Maryland Aviation Administration at Baltimore/Washington International Airport. Previously, White served as the press secretary for Maryland's Office of the Secretary of State and worked as a reporter from 1991-1997 at The Daily Banner Newspaper and for the Capital-Gazette Newspapers. White earned his B.A. in English at the University of Maryland, and an M.B.A. from the University of Maryland University College. 

Kevin Jennings, Assistant Deputy Secretary, Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools Kevin Jennings is the founder and former executive director of the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), an organization that works to make schools safe for all students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Prior to his tenure at GLSEN, Jennings served as History Department chair and a history teacher at Concord Academy in Massachusetts and before that as a history teacher at Moses Brown School in Rhode Island. Jennings has also authored six books including Mama's Boy, Preacher's Son: A Memoir which was named a 2007 Book of Honor by the American Library Association and Telling Tales Out of School which was the winner of the 1998 Lambda Literary Award. Jennings received an A.B. in history from Harvard, an M.A. from the Columbia University Teachers College, and an M.B.A. from New York University's Stern School of Business. 

 Stacey Jordan, Director of Intergovernmental Affairs Stacey Jordan comes to the department from The Education Sector where she has served as communications manager since 2002 working with executive, policy, research, and marketing teams to develop communications strategies on education policy. Jordan has also served as special advisor for education policy to the mayor of Providence, R.I., and as director of The New York City Department of Education Office of Strategic Partnerships which was created by the New York chancellor to engage the private and public sector to support the improvement of New York Public Schools. Jordan earned a B.A. in philosophy from Wheaton College and a master's in social welfare policy from the University of Texas in Austin. 

Dianne Piche, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Enforcement, Office of Civil Rights Dianne Piche joins the department after serving as the executive director of the Citizens' Commission on Civil Rights which monitors the civil rights policies and practices of the federal government, and an attorney at the Law Office of William L. Taylor where she specializes in civil rights, education law, and federal litigation. Piche has also served as an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland in College Park, as a counsel on the Independent Commission on Chapter 1, and as a consultant to the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Education and Labor. Piche has published extensively and testified on numerous occasions before the U.S. House Committee on Education and Labor. Piche earned her B.A. in English and women's studies from State University of New York at Albany and her J.D. from Catholic University. 

Julius Lloyd Horwich, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs Julius Lloyd Horwich most recently served as education counsel and policy advisor to the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Education and Labor Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education where he works with House, Senate and executive branch staff to develop and reauthorize legislation and secure appropriations for education and children's programs. Prior to his tenure in the house, Horwich served as education counsel on the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, Subcommittee on Children and Families and as Policy Counsel to U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin where he worked to develop and reauthorize legislation and secure appropriations for disability and education programs. Horwich also served as the director of federal relations for the University of Pennsylvania where he worked with university officials, deans and faculty to develop and secure Congressional support for the university's legislative priorities. Horwich received his B.S. in foreign service from Georgetown University, his J.D. from Boston University and a Master of Arts in Public Affairs Administration from the University of Wisconsin.

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