Washington Student Achievement Council: Governor Jay Inslee appoints Dr. Gene Sharratt Executive Director

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Dr. Gene Sharratt was appointed Executive Director for the Washington Student Achievement Council by Governor Jay Inslee, effective June 1, 2013. Gene’s narrative bio is at the following link: http://www.wsac.wa.gov/AboutTheCouncil/ExecutiveDirector

Following the reconfiguration of Washington’s higher education planning and coordinating functions in recent years, this appointment is the first under the new statutory scheme in which the director is appointed by the governor from a list of three candidates provided by the Council. The press release from the governor’s office is here: http://governor.wa.gov/news/releases/article.aspx?id=69

Shortly after the search and appointment process concluded, Governor Inslee also named four new citizen members to the Council. The decision to change out the initial appointees got some brief media attention:
http://blogs.seattletimes.com/opinionnw/2013/04/09/gov-jay-inslee-to-replace-half-of-the-washington-student-achievement-council/

http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2020761417_higheredboardxml.html

The new appointments were announced on May 6, by the following press release: http://governor.wa.gov/news/releases/article.aspx?id=88

The new appointees join the five continuing members, one student and the four who are appointed by their respective education sectors, and all were in attendance at the Council meeting on May 23. Governor Inslee made a personal appearance at the outset of the meeting to endorse the Council’s mission and its role in ensuring that every student in Washington has access to a world-class education. We have bios and pictures of all Council members up on our website:
http://www.wsac.wa.gov/AboutTheCouncil/Membership

Don Bennett will begin serving as Deputy Director effective June 1. His portfolio will include Executive leadership of agency administration and operations, including budget and accounting, information technology and human resources in support of Council's mission, duties and responsibilities. Responsible for resource development and allocation, monitoring and reporting on agency expenditures, and strategies to comply with effective audit and risk management practices. Responsible for technology oversight and human resource strategies to ensure continuous improvement of efficient operations, effective agency policies and employee professional development. The agency has approximately 100 employees with an annual operating budget of $12 million and administers over $330 million in grants, scholarships and contracts for student financial aid, college access programs, and student readiness and other research projects.