College of Education > News and Publications > News: 2009 > AACTE President and CEO Sharon Robinson to Deliver Commencement Address

AACTE President and CEO Sharon Robinson to Deliver Commencement Address

Commencement speaker for spring 2009, Sharon Robinson

robinson_sharon.jpg(May 2009)

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Sharon P. Robinson, president and chief executive officer for the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), delivered the spring commencement address at the Penn State College of Education’s baccalaureate ceremony, held May 16 in Eisenhower Auditorium.

Robinson became AACTE’s top executive in 2005 and assumed leadership of the association in April of that year. A lifelong civil rights activist, Robinson has waged a personal crusade to realize the nation’s moral and professional responsibility to educate and maximize the potential of minority and disabled students.

Robinson was previously president of the Educational Testing Service's Educational Policy Leadership Institute (ETS), where she also served as senior vice president and chief operating officer, as well as vice president for teaching and learning and for state and federal relations. Before joining ETS, Robinson was assistant secretary of education with the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Educational Research and Improvement. She also held a variety of leadership positions at the National Education Association (NEA), including director of the National Center for Innovation, NEA's research and development arm. Just prior to joining AACTE, Robinson served briefly as interim deputy director of the National PTA's Programs and Legislation office.

Robinson received her doctorate in educational administration and supervision from the University of Kentucky, where she also earned her bachelor's and master's degrees. In 2002, she completed the renowned Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program.

She serves on the board of trustees for Alfred Harcourt Foundation; on Columbia University’s Supplemental Education Task Force, and on the board of directors for Jobs for America's Graduates. She is past chair of the Diversity Issues in Measurement Committee, National Council for Measurement in Education.

Robinson’s private business interests include service on the board of directors for Management & Training Corporation, which operates Job Corps centers and prisons; and for Sable Uplink Communications, a company that operates independent satellite uplink communication trucks.

Among her many awards are an honorary doctorate from the University of Louisville, the Award of Appreciation from the National Head Start Association, the Founders Award from the National Commission for African American Education, the Pinnacles of Excellence Award of the Helping Hands Enrichment & Leadership Foundation, the Teacher for America Award, and the Girl Scouts' Woman of Distinction Award.