Dr. Angie Barfield

Program Specialist at Fresno County Superintendent of Schools & Former Board President of Black Students of California United

Dr. Angelia “Angie” Barfield is a wife, mother, daughter, friend, mentor, and community advocate. She has spent the last 15 years working with school aged youth and their families here in Fresno County, currently working for the Office of the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools (FCSS), under the leadership of Superintendent Dr. Michele Cantwell-Copher, in the Student Equity & Empowerment Department. Her focus is Student Voice, Equity & Inclusion, Academic Excellence, and community engagement to support Black students and families. She developed and reinforced the impact of the important programs: the Ujima Student Leadership Academy, the African American Student Advisory Cabinet, and CHIPS Summer Immersion experience specifically designed for Black students. Her work is impacting students, educators, and families throughout California and abroad. 

Dr. Barfield graduated from the prestigious Clark Atlanta University’s School of Education with a Doctoral degree in Educational Leadership. She also received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Organizational Leadership and Development from Fresno Pacific University. Dr. Barfield is a co-founder and Board President Emeritus of the Black Students of California United (BSCU), a student-led 501c3 non-profit that is dedicated to educating and cultivating future leaders by way of culturally relevant practices and identity restoration. 

Angie was born and raised in Fresno, California where she currently resides with her husband Gregory and their adult children. 

Her favorite quotes are: “Uncommon accomplishments require uncommon commitment” by Dr. Chike Akua and “My purpose is greater than my challenges” by Jon Gordon.

Lindsay Fox

President and CEO of the United Way Fresno and Madera Counties

Lindsay Fox is a respected and award-winning leader who serves as the President and Chief Executive Officer of United Way Fresno and Madera Counties. Lindsay was hired as CEO of United Way in January 2016, and she spent seven years focused on supporting working families. Lindsay’s transformational vision for the community and organization is now driving toward wealth creation and inclusive prosperity. United Way’s work to close the racial wealth gap has transformed the 100-year-old organization into a modern change agent. She transformed a struggling United Way into a financially stable high-impact organization that is now a leader and a beacon in the center of California.  

Supporting children, youth and families has defined Lindsay’s entire career. From an early age, Lindsay understood the racial inequities that created lopsided opportunities and outcomes for communities of color. At the age of 12, she committed herself to being a part of fixing and correcting these injustices. Having launched her career serving the California state legislature, her commitment to central California led her back to her hometown, serving organizations such as the Fresno County Office of Education and the Central Valley After School Foundation. Throughout her career, she has focused on identifying gaps in services, policies, and programs and finding solutions to meet those needs. 

Lindsay is a way-finder, a collaborator, and a visionary. She currently serves as chair of the California Volunteers Commission where she is supporting the implementation of an unprecedented investment in service. Lindsay is also an elected member of the inaugural United Way Worldwide National Advisory Council. She also serves on several local and statewide boards. 

Lindsay was raised in Clovis, California. Although she spent 10 years in Sacramento, she now resides in Fresno and proudly identifies as a boomerang. In her new role, she leads The Sojourner Group, a boutique consulting firm committed to finding lasting solutions that will improve our communities. 

Lindsay is the daughter of educators and believes in the power of education. She received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from the University of California, Davis, and her Master of Public Policy and Administration from Sacramento State University. She spends all of her free time with her husband Ken, her children, Rhea, Keith and Lauren, and her grandbaby, Brody. 

Matt Navo

Executive Director for the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence (CCEE)

Matt J. Navo serves as the Executive Director for the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence (CCEE). Navo’s knowledge and expertise in systems improvement comes from over 25 years of experience as a K-12 educator and leader. Navo served as the Superintendent of Sanger Unified School District from 2013 to 2018. Before assuming the role of Superintendent, he was a special education teacher, secondary instructor, counselor, resource teacher, junior high learning director, high school assistant principal, elementary and alternative education principal, director of special education, and area administrator.

Prior to his current role, Navo served as the Director of Systems Transformation with the Special Education Policy and Practice Division (SEPPD) at WestEd. He has experience working with districts and schools to guide systems transformation by developing strategies, structures, policies, and practices, aligned with the Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) at the state, county, and local levels, to close the achievement gap for all students. Navo’s expertise lies in aligning systems, building capacity for continuous improvement, fostering collaborative cultures and collective efficacy among teams, and establishing coherent and efficient models for districts and schools.

Navo has sat on various state-level committees, boards, and work groups. Navo has been a Governor appointee to the California State Board of Education (SBE) since 2019 and has served on the CCEE Governing Board, first as the Governor appointee from 2015 to 2017, and later as the Governing Board Chair from 2019 to 2021, appointed by the president of the State Board of Education. He also served on the California Practitioners Advisory Group (CPAG) and the Advisory Commission for Special Education, in which he served as committee chair for the California Special Education Task Force (Evidence-Based Practices).

Navo has been a keynote speaker and trainer for systems improvement across the state, and has presented at over twenty different conferences on special education and school reform. He is the author of Collective Efficacy in a PLC at Work (2021) and has contributed to various articles on school reform, systems improvement, Response to Intervention (RTI), Professional Learning Communities (PLC), and Explicit Direct Instruction (EDI), including ONE SYSTEM: Reforming Education to Serve All Students, Report of California’s Statewide Task Force on Special Education (2015).

Navo’s work has been highlighted for various accomplishments. Most recently he is the author of Collective Efficacy, in a PLC at work and Demystifying MTSS, A school and District Framework for meeting students’ academic and social-emotional needs.

Navo received his bachelor’s degree in education and his master’s degree in special education from California State University, Fresno. He holds an array of credentials, including a Professional Administrative Credential, Multiple Subject Teaching Credential, a Professional Specialists Credential in Special Education, and a Supplemental Credential with an Autism emphasis.

Todd Lile

Superintendent at Madera Unified School District (MUSD)

Superintendent Todd Lile is a Madera native who attended John Adams and Howard Elementary schools and Thomas Jefferson Middle School. At Madera High School, he was involved in athletics and student government for four years. While attending California State University, Fresno, he served as a special education paraprofessional for more than four years in Madera Unified. He graduated in 1996 with a BA in History. He served as a teacher for 13 years before earning his MA in educational leadership from the College of New Jersey in 2010.

As an educator for 25 years, Superintendent Lile demonstrated a love of teaching and learning. His educational career began at Clovis Unified, where he served for a combined six years between Clovis High, Clovis West, and the Center for Advanced Research and Technology (CART), where he was an original staff member and psychology teacher. He and his wife, Jessica Zapata-Lile, also of Madera, taught overseas in Escuela Americana Honduras for two years. He then taught at Dubai American Academy for five years as an International Baccalaureate history teacher.

Mr. and Mrs. Lile traveled widely in both the Old and New World together and often with students. After the birth of their first of three sons (Luke, Ian, and Benjamin respectively), they returned to California, where he eventually served as a vice principal and principal at Madera South High School. In 2015, he assumed the role of Chief Academic Officer for Secondary in Madera Unified School District. In 2017, he was named the superintendent.

Superintendent Lile is able to speak conversational Spanish and reads as much as possible about a wide variety of subjects ranging from education, psychology, to history and current events.

Jorge Aguilar

Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching Board Trustee and Superintendent of Wonderful College Prep Academy

Aguilar serves as a Commissioner on the Carnegie Postsecondary Commission, a Carnegie Learning Leadership Network member who provided plenary remarks for the 10th Anniversary Carnegie Foundation Summit on Improvement in Education. He is recipient of the Winston Doby Impact Award for exceptional professionals chosen by their colleagues for commitment to improving educational opportunities for California students. In 2015, Aguilar was invited by first lady Michelle Obama to present on education equity and access as part of a White House initiative. The same year, he was appointed by California State Superintendent to the state’s Advisory Task Force on Accountability and Continuous Improvement.

Jorge A. Aguilar began his career in education as a Spanish teacher at South Gate High School. He currently serves as Superintendent of Wonderful College Prep Academy. Previously he served as the Superintendent of the Sacramento City Unified School District, with responsibility for over forty thousand students. Before that, he served as Associate Superintendent in Fresno Unified School District and Associate Vice Chancellor for Educational and Community Partnerships, and Special Assistant to the Chancellor at the University of California, Merced.

Under his leadership, Aguilar has supported educators to significantly increase high school completion rates, dramatically reduce dropout rates, raise student performance, and improve post-secondary entry and success. He recently forged a historic agreement with the region’s major higher education institutions to enable Sacramento students to seamlessly transition to higher education. Aguilar is a champion for equity and access in education and has guided Sacramento City Unified in the creation of an award-winning Facilities Master Plan, which serves as a model for other districts for reimagining how construction and improvement projects are prioritized with a focus on schools that are historically underserved.

He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, with a degree in Latin American Studies and Spanish and Portuguese and earned his Juris Doctorate from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. He is the son of farm workers in the central valley of California and a product of the Migrant Education Program. He spent his early childhood migrating back and forth between Parlier, California and the state of Michoacán, Mexico.

Diego Arambula

Vice President for Educational Transformation at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching

Diego Arambula is a Partner with Transcend Education, working with district-run and charter schools in LA, the Bay Area, and across the country to explore how to best reimagine learning environments to best prepare all children to thrive. Prior to joining Transcend in the fall of 2018, Diego spent nearly 15 years working to build, lead, and unlock demand for innovative schools.

Diego began his work in public education in 2005 at Summit Public Schools, a leading network of public charter schools headquartered in California. There he was a classroom teacher at Summit Prep, a founding principal of Summit Public School Rainier, and the Chief Growth & Innovation Officer for the network. Through his ten years as a team member – and his years since serving on the Summit Public Schools board – Diego has supported Summit’s move toward personalization and a refined and scalable school model.  

Diego has also served as the founder and Executive Director of GO Public Schools Fresno, an education advocacy non-profit focused on unlocking demand for radically re-envisioned school models in his hometown of Fresno, CA.  Under his leadership, GO Fresno engaged nearly 1,000 parents, educators, and community allies in advocating for transformational change in Fresno Unified through their Choosing Our Future report.

He began his career in politics, serving as the Communications Director for U.S. Representative Cal Dooley after serving as Rep. Dooley’s Deputy Campaign Manager. Diego received his A.B. in government from Harvard University and a Master’s in Education from Stanford University. He currently serves on the boards of Summit Public Schools, Voices College-Bound Language Academies, GO Public Schools, and the Downtown Fresno Foundation.  He lives in Fresno with his wife, Chandelle, and their two school-aged daughters.

Robert Golden

CEO of Golden Charter Academy and former Pittsburgh Steeler

Robert Golden was one of the most highly recruited high school football players in the nation, receiving a football scholarship in 2008 to the University of Arizona, where he earned a degree in General Studies with an emphasis in Social Behavior and Human Understanding. Undrafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2012, Robert’s leadership skills manifested themselves quickly, and he was voted team captain by his peers in his second year, the youngest team captain in the Steeler’s vaunted history. Impressed by Robert’s leadership on and off the field, Steelers management selected Robert as a Player Development Representative, a position requiring great maturity and character. His added role would see him helping his fellow professional athletes who have not yet finished college return to their degrees.

Robert said goodbye to the gridiron in 2018 and returned home to Fresno, California with the mission of providing quality education, life skills and guidance to the local youth. In 2021 Robert’s dream became a reality with the creation and implementation of Golden Charter Academy, the country’s first environmental stewardship zoo school for grades TK through 8th based in his hometown of Fresno and in partnership with the Fresno Chaffee Zoo. Robert has channeled his passion and drive from his football career into becoming a Groundbreaking educator and preeminent voice in the field of charter school education and advocacy. Robert is also a highly sought out inspirational speaker, touring the country and speaking at schools, churches, corporations and organizations with his #BEGOLDEN tour.

Robert is a dedicated family man on a mission to give back to the community that has supported him throughout his high school, college and NFL career and now in his next phase as an educator. He wants to help children become equipped with knowledge and skills for their future, knowing that exposure to a world-class education will change the trajectory of young minds and their families. Robert understands, from personal experience, unequal opportunities that less fortunate families may have to overcome and desires to help children formulate their dreams and develop skills to make those dreams become reality.

Misty Her

Deputy Superintendent at fresno unified school district (FUSD)

Misty Her was appointed Deputy Superintendent of the Fresno Unified School District in March 2021. Stepping into the Deputy Superintendent role has allowed her to continue her dedication to improve student progress, build and develop employee relations and expanded community partnerships at a deeper level. Deputy Superintendent Her has worked her entire career in Fresno Unified, starting as a preschool aide and then moved to teacher teaching grades second through sixth. She became the first Hmong Vice Principal in Fresno Unified School District and 2 years later would become the very first Hmong Woman Principal in the United States. She has also
served as an Instructional Superintendent with School Leadership.

Misty believes we each have a calling. Her calling is to do educational missionary work to impact and change the lives of children and their families. She knows the decisions she makes has a direct impact in changing the trajectory of the young minds that she has the privilege to interact with every day. She believes the greatest gift we can give someone is the opportunity to see their full potential. It’s incredibly powerful to invest in and inspire HOPE in our youth.

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