CCSSO Announces North Dakota and South Carolina Chiefs Join Board of Directors


Washington, D.C. (January 9, 2019) –– The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) today announced that North Dakota Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler and South Carolina Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman have joined the Board of Directors.

CCSSO’s Board of Directors manages the overall business affairs of the Council and is the governing body of the organization. The Board is composed of the president, the president-elect, the past president, and six directors elected by members of the CCSSO membership. 

“CCSSO has a long history and exemplary tradition of providing support to states in this nation and I’m honored to be joining its board of dynamic leaders,” said Superintendent Baesler. “I have tremendous respect for Pedro Rivera and I look forward to working with him, the other board members and CCSSO leaders as we strive to fulfill CCSSO’s mission for the success of all students."

“I look forward to working with my counterparts around the country and the staff at CCSSO to help guide education forward as a member of CCSSO’s Board of Directors,” said Superintendent Spearman. “We are poised to make great strides in the coming years and I am excited to be a part of this important work.”

CCSSO Executive Director Carissa Moffat Miller said she looks forward to working with both superintendents and welcomes their guidance on the CCSSO board.

“Superintendent Baesler is committed to providing the best possible learning environment and educational experience for every child in her state, and has increased opportunities for students and the public to collaborate on key issues such as school safety and mental health, strengthening state content standards, and school flexibility under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA),” Miller said.

“Superintendent Spearman is dedicated to ensuring a system of personalized instruction that will prepare every graduate for successful life after high school and brings a commitment to increasing educational and career training opportunities for all students, improving school safety, and recruiting and training high-quality teachers and school leaders,” Miller said.

The following is a list of CCSSO’s 2018-19 Board of Directors:

  • President: Pedro Rivera, Pennsylvania
  • President-Elect: Jillian Balow, Wyoming
  • Past President: Carey M. Wright, Mississippi
  • Board Member: Kirsten Baesler, North Dakota
  • Board Member: Matthew Blomstedt, Nebraska
  • Board Member: Steve Canavero, Nevada
  • Board Member: Sydnee Dickson, Utah
  • Board Member: Tony Smith, Illinois
  • Board Member: Molly Spearman, South Carolina




The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) is a nonpartisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity, Bureau of Indian Education, and five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational issues. The Council seeks member consensus on major educational issues and expresses their views to civic and professional organizations, federal agencies, Congress, and the public.

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