Industry News

ISTE appoints Cheryl Scott Williams Interim CEO

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) has appointed Cheryl Scott Williams interim CEO, the trade organization announced Monday.

Williams is a nationally recognized leader in education reform, with extensive experience leading nonprofit boards and building successful board-staff relationships. She was most recently the executive director of the Learning First Alliance. She will lead the work of the organization while the ISTE board conducts a search for its next CEO.


Cheryl Scott Williams

“Cheryl brings the experience and leadership capabilities that ISTE needs to guide us through this time of transition,” said ISTE Board Chair Kecia Ray in a prepared statement. “We look forward to working with her as she collaborates with staff to continue to provide ISTE members with the resources they need to fulfill ISTE’s mission and create a world where all learners thrive, achieve and contribute.”

Williams replaces Brian Lewis, who unexpectedly stepped down as CEO Sept. 10. No reason was given for his departure.

Lewis joined ISTE as CEO in June 2012, after 25 years in both public and private sectors. He had previously been the chief strategy officer and interim CEO for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

ISTE is a prominent trade organization, representing some 100,000 education professionals involved in education technology. Its activities include professional development, political advocacy, information dissemination and standards development. The organization publishes digital literacy standards for teachers, students and administrators. It also works to advocate policies to expand the use of technology in schools.

ISTE may be best known for its large annual conference it stages every summer, which draws thousands of educators, administrators, companies and press. ISTE organizes hundreds of workshops, panels, lectures, presentations and exhibits for the conference, which was held in Denver at the end of June. ISTE 2017 will be held June 25-28 in San Antonio, TX.

Lewis could not be reached for comment. In a statement, Williams said, “I look forward to working with the ISTE board and staff during this time of transition. It has been exciting to see how ISTE has grown over the past years and I’m anxious to connect with education technology leaders in the field to gather their wisdom as we move forward.”

A longtime ISTE member, Williams served as ISTE board president from 2002-2004. She is also a past board chair of the Consortium for School Networking, and past board member of the National Coalition for Technology in Education and Training.

Prior to leading the Learning First Alliance, Williams served as a senior consultant at the American Productivity and Quality Center. She was previously vice president, strategic initiatives, at Teachscape, a San Francisco-based company that designs and delivers online, job-embedded professional development for teachers and principals.

In addition, she has served as vice president of education at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and spent 14 years directing the education technology program at the National School Boards Association.

Williams began her career in education as an English language arts teacher in Montgomery County, MD, and Fairfax County, VA. She holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in English and secondary education from the University of Maryland, College Park.

About the Author

Richard Chang is associate editor of THE Journal. He can be reached at

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