George Lucas Educational Foundation

Chad Ratliff

Director of Innovation and Instructional Programs, Albemarle County Public Schools

Chad is Director of Innovation and Instructional Programs for Albemarle County Public Schools, a 14,000 student public school district surrounding Charlottesville, Virginia. He is responsible for the development and implementation of programs that align with the school district’s strategic focus on student-centered instruction, choice, collaborative partnerships and lifelong learning.

His program portfolio includes the district’s two charter schools, its maker learning emphasis, STEM, CTE and other customized pathways, and the expansion of entrepreneurial opportunities within the district’s instructional model. He serves as Project Director for the $3.4 million U.S. Department of Education Investing in Innovation (i3) grant, 'Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering as a Driver of Cross-Curricular Change' and leads the district’s efforts on the National Science Foundation grant, 'MAKER: Studying the Role of Failure in Design and Making'.

He has been invited to represent this work at several White House events and called to testify before the Virginia General Assembly. He has appeared before such organizations as the American Association of School Superintendents, the National School Boards Association, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and at World Maker Faire. He has been an internal workshop presenter and has served as a reviewer for the National Science Foundation. He was the keynote speaker for the 2016 National Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education annual conference and at the 2017 Teaching and Learning with Technology Conference at James Madison University. He was named on of the nation’s “20 to Watch” by the National School Boards Association in 2017.

In 2015, he was appointed by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe to the Council for Youth Entrepreneurship. Between 2009-2015, he was a Virginia Board of Education appointee to the State Advisory Committee for Career and Technical Education and has served as the Board Chair for the Virginia Career Education Foundation. In 2013, he was the facilitator for the High School of the Future Startup event for Governor McDonnell’s STEM Summit.

Also an adjunct professor of entrepreneurship and founder, he is active in the entrepreneurial community and has organized several Startup Weekend events. He holds a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Virginia and a MBA from Virginia Tech. He is an alumnus of the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business Executive Educators Leadership Institute.

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