KnowledgeWorks Names Dr. William Hite Jr. as New CEO, President

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Photo of Dr. William Hite, Jr., CEO and President of KnowledgeWorks. A Black man, bald, in a suit and tie. For more information, please contact Karen Bells, kbells@vehrcommunications.com, 513-334-9444

CINCINNATI (January 28, 2022) – Bolstering its vision to transform the future of learning, KnowledgeWorks has named a dynamic and respected educator as its new leader. William Hite Jr., Ed.D., superintendent of schools for the School District of Philadelphia, will become CEO and president of KnowledgeWorks effective July 1.

Hite, who has more than 30 years of experience as a leader in public education, was selected after a robust nationwide search. He brings to the role a proven track record for improving academic and operational performance, understanding policy and financial intricacies and emphasizing versatility in leadership approaches to spark active participation and collaboration.

A national nonprofit based in Cincinnati, KnowledgeWorks partners with school districts, state departments of education and education agencies to help build a culture of personalized, competency-based learning, investing in advocacy, policy, strategic foresight, research and practice. Its work in teaching and learning helps every student feel like they belong and have the power to make choices about their futures – not just about what they’ll be, but who.

“KnowledgeWorks will benefit tremendously from Dr. Hite’s significant experience in the K-12 space and his focus on innovation and quality, which will enable us to operationalize our personalized, competency-based learning model and scale up nationally,” said Lizzette Gonzalez Reynolds, chair of the KnowledgeWorks Board of Directors. “We also look forward to his ability to help us refine our mission in the context of equity, refocus our strategic plan and maximize our investments.”

Hite will oversee an annual budget of $14 million, a $125 million investment portfolio and a staff of nearly 50. His experience in culture-building and his communication strength should invigorate the KnowledgeWorks team, Reynolds said.

For Hite, the position represents an opportunity to help transform learning at a systems level on a national scale.

“Nothing is more important than ensuring that our nation’s children have a strong education, and I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve had in my career to work toward that mission, particularly with the School District of Philadelphia,” Hite said. “I’m excited to take on a new challenge in this journey and look forward to working with the KnowledgeWorks team to deploy innovative education approaches that position students to thrive in college, career and civic life.”

Serving as superintendent of the Philadelphia school system since 2012, Hite oversees a $3 billion public sector organization with 206,000 students across 300 public and charter schools. His accomplishments there have included increasing student academic performance and attendance as well as the number of minority teachers. Prior to that role, he served as superintendent of Prince George’s County Public School District in Upper Marlboro, Maryland; area superintendent of Cobb County Schools in Marietta, Georgia; and director of instruction at Henrico County Schools in Richmond, Virginia.

Hite holds a Ph.D. in educational administration and a bachelor’s in education from Virginia Tech, as well as a master’s in educational administration from the University of Virginia. Among his many affiliations and awards is being named the 2020 National School Foundation Superintendent of the Year.

Hite will report to the KnowledgeWorks Board of Directors. Holly Brinkman has been serving as interim CEO and president since the resignation of Dr. Charles Ambrose in March 2021. She will retain her roles as chief operating officer and vice president of finance.

About KnowledgeWorks

KnowledgeWorks is a national nonprofit organization advancing a future of learning that ensures each student graduates ready for what’s next. For 20 years, we’ve been partnering with states, communities and leaders across the country to imagine, build and sustain vibrant learning communities. Through evidence-based practices and a commitment to equitable outcomes, we’re creating the future of learning, together.  www.knowledgeworks.org