Teachers College faculty member Aaron Pallas and TC Trustee and alumnus C. Kent McGuire (M.A. ’79) have been elected members of the National Academy of Education (NAEd),. They join a cohort of education leaders who are being honored for their place at the “forefront of those who are improving the lives of students in the United States and abroad,” said Gloria Ladson-Billings, President of NAEd, which was founded in 1965 to advance high-quality research to improve education policy and practice.

Pallas, Arthur I. Gates Professor of Sociology & Education, is the Chair of TC’s Department of Education Policy and Social Analysis. He is also the Co-Founding Director of The Public Matters: How Americans View Education, Health & Psychology, a TC-based public opinion survey, and a frequent commentator in the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times and a variety of other media outlets. 

Pallas seeks to inform the public about the relevance and usability of educational research for policy and practice. His work, which uses a variety of research tools, has addressed accountability and resource distribution policies in public schools, and the sociology of teaching and teachers’ work and careers.

Pallas has served as a statistician at the National Center for Education Statistics in the U.S. Department of Education and is a former editor of the American Sociological Association journal Sociology of Education. He is a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association and an elected member of the Sociological Research Association, the preeminent honorary society of sociology scholars. He has also served as Chair of the Sociology of Education and Sociology of Children and Youth sections of the American Sociological Association. With TC’s Anna Neumann, Professor of Higher Education, he is the coauthor of Convergent Teaching: Tools to Spark Deeper Learning in College (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2019). 

McGuire, who served as Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education from 1998 to 2001, currently is the Program Director of Education at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. In that role he leads strategic investments in teaching and learning, with a focus on helping all students succeed in college, work and civic life. 

McGuire has previously served as President of the Southern Education Foundation, where his efforts included a focus on the South’s high dropout rate and disproportionate rate of suspensions among boys of color. He has also served as Dean of the College of Education at Temple University and run major programs for the Eli Lilly Endowment and the Pew Charitable Trusts. 

McGuire serves on the boards of the Wallace Foundation, the Institute for Education Leadership and the Panasonic Foundation.