NORTHAMPTON – The CES Board of Directors voted unanimously on Wednesday to hire William Diehl as the new Executive Director, succeeding Joan Schuman.
“I am very pleased for Bill and for the agency,” said Schuman, who retires at the end of next month after 20 years at the helm of the Northampton-based educational service agency.
CES Board Chairperson Lisa Minnick said that Diehl “has proven to be a significant asset to the Collaborative” since he was hired as Deputy Director in 2010. She said she is excited about future possibilities for CES with Diehl as Executive Director. “In addition to his clear understanding of our agency and its offerings, he brings valuable experience from his long educational career to this critical leadership position,” said Minnick.
“I am thrilled and honored by the decision of the Board,” said Diehl. “I have a passionate commitment to the mission, vision and core values of the Collaborative, and I look forward to working closely with our outstanding staff, our 36 member districts, and our key state and local partners in the most important work in America, providing rich and equitable educational opportunities, access, and outcomes to all children and youth.?_
During his interview, Minnick said the Board “was impressed with Diehl’s commitment to involving the Collaborative’s member districts in defining the agency’s future, and moved by his strong statements about social justice and the value of education.”
As Deputy Director, Diehl led development, research and evaluation, and strategic planning at CES. In addition, he oversaw a variety of student and learner support programs, including afterschool, alternative education, career-technical education and community partnership work. Diehl also led the turn-around initiative when CES managed Dean Technical High School in Holyoke from 2011-2013.
Prior to his work at the Collaborative, Diehl was Executive Director of Diploma Plus, a nationally recognized alternative education model for youth who have been failed by the traditional education system. Diehl has also worked at Commonwealth Corporation, designing and managing school-community partnerships, adolescent literacy projects, and school to work initiatives. He has managed educational reform initiatives in two cities in Michigan, and has been a middle and high school teacher and school administrator.
Diehl holds an Ed.D. in Reading Education from Indiana University, Bloomington. He has been on the faculty at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, University of Michigan, Flint and Central Michigan University, as a professor of Secondary Literacy Education. He also holds a Massachusetts school superintendent license.
He lives in Northampton with his wife, Jeanne Birdsall, the award-winning children’s book author of the Penderwicks series and Flora’s Very Windy Day.