Maya Angelou Schools and the See Forever Foundation Announces Dr. Clarisse Mendoza Davis as new Chief Executive Officer
The Maya Angelou Schools and See Forever Foundation announced that Dr. Clarisse Mendoza Davis will serve as the new Chief Executive Officer, concluding a three-month-long search. The CEO will lead the organization’s network of schools with a primary focus on academic performance, long-term planning, and sustainability.
Since 2016, Mendoza Davis has served as Chief of Schools for the Maya Angelou Schools network, leading the organization through many achievements, including the re-accreditation of the Maya Angelou Academy located at New Beginnings Youth Detention facility. Mendoza Davis has a wealth of experience in urban education, both as an educator and administrator. Before joining the team at Maya Angelou Schools, Mendoza Davis served in multiple roles within the District of Columbia Public Schools, as Principal of Tindley Renaissance Academy in Indianapolis, Indiana, and as Deputy Chief of Schools at the UNO Charter School Network (now the Acero Network of Schools) in Chicago, Illinois. In 2019, The Leadership Center for Excellence recognized Mendoza Davis in their “40 Under 40” 2019 Class for her demonstrating exceptional and impactful leadership.
Outside of her career, Mendoza Davis enjoys spending time with her husband, William, andtheir daughter Sophia. Some of her hobbies include baking, trying out new recipes in the kitchen, and reading. Her cupcakes are often highly requested for staff-wide gatherings. Read Mendoza Davis biography, here.
Mendoza Davis provided insight into her role as the new CEO:
What theme defines the new CEO’s leadership style?
Mendoza Davis defines her leadership style through this quote written by Dr. Maya Angelou, “Without courage we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.”
According to Mendoza Davis, students, families and staff will come first. She states that the Maya Angelou School network is at a place of reflection. “We moved out of that survival space and can ask ourselves at this juncture– what else can we do that’s in line with our mission?”
Internally, she’d like to review how the work will support scholars beyond the diploma? How does one implement the expertise that the organization has in serving opportunity youth?
Externally, how can the story be told to truly represent the mission? How can the Maya Angelou Schools’ network lend resources to support the needs of vulnerable DC communities?
“It is my job to find resources, fiscal or otherwise, that align with what school leaders, teachers, counselors, and staff are trying to do on a daily basis to support students,” Mendoza Davis said.
What can the public look forward to from the new CEO?
She shares, “This role is a shift from the Chief of Schools. I get to be much more of an external advocate for our students, families, and staff. Our mission to serve opportunity youth is really unique in this city, and it is my job to make sure that everyone understands what that experience is like and what we [Maya Angelou Schools] need to continue doing this exciting work.”
Mendoza Davis officially began her role as CEO on Monday, April 13, 2020. Find out more information about our schools and practices at www.seeforever.org. Stay connected with us on Facebook @SeeForeverFoundation and @MayaSchools on Twitter and Instagram.