When Gov. Jay Inslee fired four members of the Washington Student Achievement Council earlier this year, the big question for surprised university officials and lawmakers became who the governor would choose to replace them.
Inslee answered that question Monday, announcing a slate of appointments that includes the recently-named National Teacher of the Year and the president and CEO of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.
“With this new council we have a great opportunity to rethink how we work with the business community to help students access the training and education they need to be successful and attain the knowledge and skills that our employers demand,” the governor said in a news release.
The council, formed last August as a replacement to the Washington Higher Education Coordinating Board, oversees the state’s college and university systems and is currently writing a road map for higher ed.
It is made up of five gubernatorial appointees, who include the student member, plus representatives from the state K-12 education office, the four-year universities, the community colleges and private schools.
Inslee’s decision to replace all of his non-student appointees surprised many, in part because they included a former colleague in Congress, former U.S. Rep. Brian Baird, and in part because it happened while the nomination process was already under way.
Here are the new appointees, who must be approved by the state Senate:
— Jeff Charbonneau, a math and science teacher at the Yakima Valley’s Zillah High School who was recently named National Teacher of the Year.
— Maud Daudon, a former Seattle deputy mayor and chief of staff from 1998 to 2001, who currently serves as president and CEO of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce. Daudon also spent six years as chief financial officer for the Port of Seattle and served on Inslee’s transition team.
— Karen Lee, the CEO of Pioneer Human Services, who served five years as commissioner of the Washington State Employment Security Department.
— Dr. Susana Reyes, the assistant superintendent of the Pullman School District since 2006, who will join the Mead School District in July.
The four replaced members were Baird; former Seattle Community College District Board Chairwoman Constance Rice; former state Academic Achievement and Accountability Commission chairman José Gaitán; and Jay Reich, former deputy chief of staff to Gary Locke when he served as Commerce secretary in the Obama administration.