Ruth M. Batson Social Justice Award 2013
Dr. Carol R. Johnson, Superintendent, Boston Public Schools: Award Recipient
Dr. Carol R. Johnson has been Superintendent of the Boston Public Schools (BPS) since August 2007, having been appointed by a unanimous vote of the Boston School Committee after a national search. As Superintendent of the 57,000-student district, she also serves as a cabinet member for Mayor Thomas M. Menino. Under her leadership, the district has focused on closing achievement and access gaps as well as graduating all students prepared for college and career success. In 2012, Dr. Johnson received the nation's highest honor for urban education leadership, the Richard R. Green Award, presented by the Council of the Great City Schools. In 2010, BPS was recognized as one of the most improved school districts in the world by McKinsey and Company.
Dr. Johnson has a wealth of experience in public education as a teacher, principal and district administrator. Prior to her appointment in Boston, Dr. Johnson was Superintendent in Memphis, TN, and Minneapolis, MN, where she was named Minnesota Superintendent of the Year. Nationally, Dr. Johnson serves on the Board of Directors for the Council of the Great City Schools, the Spencer Foundation Board, the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley Board, the Harvard University Urban Superintendents' Advisory Board, and she has served on the College Board. She serves as an ex-officio board member for the Boston Plan for Excellence. Dr. Johnson earned a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Fisk University in Nashville, TN, and master's and doctorate degrees from the University of Minnesota. She has also been awarded honorary degrees from Lemoyne Owen College and Rhodes College, both in Memphis, TN and Simmons College in Boston. She was married to history teacher Matthew Johnson (deceased), and she parents three adult offspring.