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Don Shalvey, Deputy Director K-12, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Prior to joining the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Don was the founder and CEO of Aspire Public Schools, and has spent the past 40 years in public education where he is widely recognized as a leader in public school reform and the charter school movement. In 1992, Don served as the Superintendent of San Carlos School District, where he sponsored the first charter school in California. The San Carlos Charter Learning Center became a California Distinguished School and has since served as a model for many other charter schools. In 1998, Don and entrepreneur Reed Hastings co-founded Californians for Public School Excellence, a grassroots organization that led to the passage of the Charter Schools Act of 1998, which lifted the cap on the number of charter schools in the state. Dr. Shalvey is a frequent advisor to policy makers, practitioners and authorizers of charter schools across the nation. In 2002, the prestigious Ashoka Foundation recognized Don as a Fellow for his outstanding work as a social entrepreneur. More recently, Don was given the James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award for advancing the quality of life for Californians, and in June 2009, he was elected to the Charter School Hall of Fame. Don earned a Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership/Administration from the University of Southern California, a Masters of Education in Counseling and Guidance from Gonzaga University, and a B.A. from LaSalle College.