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Dr. Deborah Sims

Deborah Sims, Ed.D., is an independent consultant, offering, customized executive level leadership and organization advisory services. Dr. Sims with more than thirty-five years of proven experience and professional expertise, has served in leadership and executive positions in both K-12 Education and non-profit organizations. She recently served as Vice President, Strategic Systems and Innovation for Pivot Learning, a nationally recognized non-profit organization committed to transforming public education by partnering with school districts and educational systems, in their efforts to innovate, and improve student outcomes and organization effectiveness through equity, diversity and inclusion. In Dr. Sims’ role, she led transformative initiatives, across the nation in the areas of education finance, executive leadership development and change management in partnership with the Gates Foundation, McKinsey and Company and the Carnegie Foundation.

Prior to Dr. Sims’ tenure at Pivot Learning, she served as Superintendent of the Antioch Unified School District in Antioch, California. As the Chief Executive Officer, she was recognized for the transformative accomplishments which were achieved under her leadership such as:

  • Significant continuous improvement and increase in student achievement districtwide throughout her tenure
  • Fiscal Solvency -by increasing district reserves, achieved Standard and Poor’s and Moody’s bond rating upgrades
  • Passage of AUSD’s first Facilities Bond
  • Oversight of the construction oftwo new schools
  • Secured millions of Foundation dollars to support the district’s strategic plan, Blueprint for Excellence, A Strategic Plan for Transformation
  • Increased state and national recognition for successful secondary school reform and governance development and reform

Deborah Sims, as a nationally recognized leader, has served as a mentor and executive coach for numerous superintendents, and executive level leaders. Prior to Dr. Sims’ appointment as Superintendent, she was selected from among three hundred national  leaders in education, corporate and the military to be named a Broad Fellow in the distinguished Broad Superintendent’s Academy, whose mission was to prepare leaders to assume the leadership of the nation’s largest urban school systems. Due to her experiences and expertise in leadership development, curriculum, organization effectiveness, labor relations and finance, acquired as Chief of Operations and Instructional Support and Associate Superintendent in the San Francisco Unified School District, she distinguished herself as a leader and mentor among her cohort colleagues and was the first Broad Fellow to be appointed a district superintendent.

Her reputation as an experienced, highly skilled educational leader, resulted in her selection as a U.S. Department of Education Reviewer for the  Race To The Top Initiative. This initiative was a $4 Billion competitive grant created to reward innovation and transformational reforms across the nation under the Obama Administration.

Deborah Sims also served as a results-driven school site administrator and teacher prior to being appointed to district leadership in the San Francisco.

Dr. Deborah Sims has worked tirelessly to support and improve the conditions for the community through volunteerism, board membership and philanthropy. Marian Wright Edelman once said, ”Service is the rent we pay for being,” and it’s within this context that Dr. Sims joyfully carries out this obligation.

Dr. Sims is the recipient of numerous awards recognizing  her accomplishments and contributions to her field and her commitment to service. Her affiliations through membership and leadership include:

  • Children’s Council of San Francisco, Vice Chair
  • International Women’s Leadership Forum
  • Silicon Valley American Leadership Forum
  • San Francisco Foundation Koshland Committee
  • East Bay American Heart Association
  • American Association of School Administrators
  • San Francisco Chapter of the Links, Inc.
  • Harvard University Principals Center
  • Fremont Education Fund