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B.A. in Political Science with minor in Policy Studies from University of California, Los Angeles Upon graduation, Tanya Johnson began her career in education in Compton, CA as a teacher of Math and Science nine years ago. In 2004, she moved to the east coast and successfully worked for five years to close the achievement gap in mathematics at North Star Academy (Downtown) in Newark, NJ. In maintaining her commitment to serve students (and parents) attending schools in high needs districts, Tanya has recently transitioned into a teacher leadership position as Staff Developer at New Heights Academy Charter School in the Washington Heights community in New York. Tanya hopes to blend her interests in the field of law with her experiences as a growing leader in education to protect the interests of students, parents and teachers. She aspires to develop a public school model that will radically transform struggling institutions in high needs areas into effective learning communities. Such a school would produce 21st century critical thinkers who develop their strengths and who connect with and become leaders in their community.