Corrected: This story incorrectly noted the length of David G. Imig’s appointment at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. His stint as an education professor there is to last for three years.
Sharon P. Robinson, a former vice president of the Educational Testing Service, has been selected as the new president of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education.
Ms. Robinson, who will begin her new position April 1, is replacing David G. Imig, the Washington-based organization’s chief executive for the past 25 years.
The first African-American and first woman to step into the post, Ms. Robinson worked in various leadership roles at the ETS from 1997 to 2004. Before then, she served as the assistant secretary in charge of the U.S. Department of Education’s office of educational research and improvement during the Clinton administration.
Unlike most others who have served as the AACTE’s chief executive, she has no experience as a dean of a university school or college of education.
Originally a high school English teacher in Lexington, Ky., Ms. Robinson worked as the director of the National Center for Innovation at the National Education Association in the early 1990s.
Varied Experience Cited
Choosing someone who has not been an education dean might seem to be an odd decision by the AACTE’s board of directors, the board’s chairwoman, Mary Brabeck, acknowledged last week in a statement.
But “Sharon’s background in government, corporate affairs, and association work is exactly the type of experience AACTE needs to advance its agenda of advocacy for all learners,” said Ms. Brabeck, the dean of the Steinhardt School of Education at New York University.
In a separate statement, Ms. Robinson noted what a critical time it is for schools of education, when the demands for high-quality teacher-preparation programs have never been greater.
“I am very happy to join AACTE,” she said, “and I look forward to working with its member institutions to foster excellent teaching.”
Currently, 785 schools of education are members of the AACTE.
Traditional teacher education programs have come under assault from many quarters in recent years, including the Bush administration, which has promoted alternative routes into the profession.
Mr. Imig, who announced his retirement in July, will become a visiting scholar at the Palo Alto-based Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching this spring. He will then begin a three-month appointment as a professor of education at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
A version of this article appeared in the February 02, 2005 edition of Education Week as Teacher Colleges’ Group Picks Former Clinton Official