August 10, 2022
Raikes Foundation Announces New Senior Director of Youth-Serving Systems Strategy and Director of National Education Strategy and Launches search for K-12 Education Program Officer

The Raikes Foundation is pleased to announce the promotion of key personnel following the completion of a strategic refinement process.

Dr. Zoë Stemm-Calderon has transitioned into the newly created role as Senior Director of the Youth-Serving Systems Strategy. The foundation is excited to more tightly integrate our work in service of young people across our historic and expanding strategy areas, including cross-system efforts to support highly mobile youth and young adults experiencing homelessness, and K-12 and post-secondary education. Zoë will oversee the development, alongside our field and funding partners, of a strategy that advances our shared vision for equitable youth serving systems. This promotion builds on her success cultivating broad coalition and investing in field partners who have lead transformation of our national education system since she joined the foundation in 2015 as Director of the National Education Strategy.

Dr. Gisele C. Shorter has been promoted to Director of the National Education Strategy. Gisele is excited to work alongside Zoë and the rest of our education team to advance education policies that support students furthest from educational justice, such as those experiencing homelessness, foster care, or the justice system. She will continue to lead the K-12 school and system redesign portfolio, including the work of the BELE Network, and responsive fieldbuilding with aligned funders and partners. This transition will leverage her track record as an Education Strategy Program Officer and nonprofit leader transforming organizations to meet the unique needs of individual students and systems to that reliably produce equitable student outcomes.

We’re Hiring!

Our Education team brings tremendous passion and a deep commitment to equity in the work they do. As a result of these changes, we are looking for a dedicated, mission-driven Education Program Officer to join our team and lead our K-12 work focused on equity-centered state and federal policy designed to advance equitable funding mechanism and support students furthest from educational justice—those experiencing homelessness, foster care, or the justice system.

You can read more about that position and apply here.

More About Zoe: Before joining the foundation in 2015, Zoë served as a resident at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation while completing her doctorate in education leadership from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Previously, Zoë was assistant superintendent of professional support and development at Houston Independent School District (ISD). Prior to her work in Houston ISD, Zoë was a senior leader at Teach for America, where she spent her 10-year tenure focused on advancing the organization's approach to teacher, coach, and manager development. Zoë began her career as an elementary school teacher in Houston.

More About Gisele: Prior to joining the Raikes Foundation in 2018, Gisele held leadership positions at Turnaround for Children, ROAD Charter High Schools, and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Harlem, and other community-based organizations. Her career has been underscored by a deep commitment to affecting positive change in the lives of young people and families. She has successfully led large-scale and community-based programmatic, research, and policy initiatives to advance justice and equity; close health disparities; and ensure access and opportunities for BIPOC and multi-system involved youth to excel.

We will be sharing much more in the coming months about how our work has is evolving and what we’ve learned. If you’d like to hear more sign up for our newsletter here.