This week, NWEA announced that Christopher Minnich has been named the new chief executive officer of the organization. NWEA had previously shared the news that current CEO Matt Chapman is retiring after more than a decade in the role. Minnich is currently the Executive Director of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) in Washington, DC.
“Chris impressed us with his deep expertise with assessment combined with his expansive vision for its possibilities,” said Kenneth Wong, the Walter and Leonore Annenberg Chair for Education Policy at Brown University, and chair of the NWEA board of directors. “We believe he is the right person to lead NWEA into a new era while preserving its mission and values.”
Minnich will be only the third chief executive officer in the forty-year history of NWEA. Minnich has led CCSSO since 2012, after joining the organization in 2008. As executive director, he worked with states to raise the bar on standards, assessments, and accountability; transform educator preparation programs; and implement and sustain promising reforms across the country. He was also a critical player in the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act in 2015.
“I am honored that the board has given me this opportunity,” said Minnich. “I have always seen NWEA as an innovator able to keep a critical focus on serving students and teachers, undergirded with important research capabilities. I am truly excited about the opportunities ahead.”
From 2005-2008, Minnich held multiple positions at Harcourt, all focused on the advancement and improvement of assessments. Before joining Harcourt, he served as the Director of Test Design and Implementation at the Oregon Department of Education. While there, he led the statewide implementation of Oregon’s online assessment.
“We could not be more excited to welcome Chris to NWEA,” said Matt Chapman. “His roots in Oregon, fluency in the education policy challenges of the day, and vision for a cohesive system based on multiple measures designed to return maximum value to teachers and students align completely with our mission of partnering to help all kids learn.”
For more on the announcement, check out these posts in Education Week and Politico.