About This Project

Karen D. Smith, M.Ed.

Consulting Associate


Karen is a dedicated, goal-driven professional with over 15 years of leadership experience and teacher/manager development. Having been a teacher, turnaround principal, national leadership consultant, and chief academic officer in turnaround schools, Karen is particularly skilled at leading and supporting others in changing culture and increasing outcomes that will yield dramatic results for children.
Karen has extensive experience serving in K-12 environments in traditional public, charter, and private schools. She has effectively coached, developed, and managed principals and leadership teams at schools of all sizes. She has also designed and led trainings on diversity, leadership, and educating boys of color.
Karen holds a master’s in secondary education from The George Washington University and a master’s in supervision and administration from Trinity University.


Karen’s article “Truth or Consequences: A Road Map to Success” was featured in the May 2017 issue of Principal Leadership magazine.


You can also read Karen’s post “Do You Care Enough to Save a Life?” on ASCD’s Inservice blog published in February 2017. In this post, Karen shares how during her tenure as a principal in Washington, D.C., losing five students to violence in one academic year prompted her and her team to take a closer look at how they could serve their students in life-saving ways.


In this post on our blog, Karen also shares her reflections and recommendations on using inspiration and accountability as key levers to affect change in her school.