Leadership Team

The Leadership Team meets regularly to discuss issues and make decisions related to the overall operation of the Council. They are responsible for establishing and monitoring the strategic goals of the organization; creating or improving Council processes; determining future needs and directions of the Council; and providing guidance and overall leadership to Council staff.

CCSSO Executive Director Chris Minnich

Chris Minnich, CCSSO Executive DirectorChris Minnich was appointed Executive Director of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) in December, 2012. As Executive Director, Chris has ushered in a new strategic plan in which CCSSO is committed making sure all students participating in our public education system - regardless of background - graduate prepared for college, careers, and life.

Since 2012, CCSSO has worked with states to raise the bar on standards, assessments and accountability, transform educator preparation programs, design new approaches to teaching and learning, and implement and sustain promising reforms across the country.

Chris first joined CCSSO in 2008 as part of the standards program. In 2009, he assumed the role of Strategic Initiative Director of Standards, Assessment and Accountability, where he facilitated the state-led Common Core State Standards Initiative resulting in 45 states and the District of Columbia voluntarily adopting the Common Core State Standards in English language arts and Mathematics. In 2010, Chris became the Senior Membership Director at CCSSO, serving as the lead contact for all 57 of CCSSO's members.

Chris has an extensive background in assessment and accountability work. From 2005-2008, he held multiple positions at Harcourt, all focused on the advancement and improvement of assessments. Specifically, he led the development and deployment of a teacher-centered online portal focused on assessment education.

Before joining Harcourt, Chris served as the Director of Test Design and Implementation at the Oregon Department of Education from 2003-2005. While there, he led the statewide implementation of Oregon's online assessment.

Chris holds a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from the University of Washington, Seattle, as well as a Masters of Public Policy from the University of Maryland, College Park. He lives in Alexandria, Virginia with his wife and two sons.

Leadership Team

Kirsten Carr, Senior Program Director, Student Expectations
Paul Ferrari, Senior Program Director, Teacher Workforce
Melissa Johnston, Deputy Executive Director, Strategy and Operations
Carissa Miller, Deputy Executive Director, Membership and Outreach
Scott Norton, Deputy Executive Director, Programs
Carrie Phillips, Senior Program Director, Student Transitions
Monica Taylor, Senior Program Director, School Leadership and Continuous Improvement