As the leader of CCSA, Myrna Castrejón has managed the membership organization representing California’s public charter schools since January 2019.
Prior to assuming the role of President and CEO, she served for nearly three years as the Founding Executive Director of Great Public Schools Now, an organization created in winter 2015. As the Executive Director, Myrna led Great Public Schools Now’s strategy to transform public education in Los Angeles by expanding high-quality public schools of diverse governance models in the areas most in need of support.
Before that assignment, Myrna worked at the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) in various key leadership roles since its founding in late 2003, leading the government affairs, local advocacy, quality, school development, and research and evaluation portfolios at various times. Her work with CCSA was preceded by a decade in school reform efforts in Texas and Los Angeles.
In the late 1990s-early 2000s, Myrna served as a consultant to the state-funded Urban Education Partnership/LAUSD, helping to develop eight innovative early education service centers in the most high-need areas of Los Angeles; served as VP of School and Family Networks for the Los Angeles Alliance for Student Achievement and the director for family engagement for the Los Angeles Annenberg Metropolitan Project.
In Texas, Myrna spearheaded parent and community engagement efforts at the El Paso Collaborative for Academic Excellence, a K-16 systemic reform initiative and served for nearly a decade as a key education leader, supporting community organizing strategies for the Southwest Industrial Areas Foundation and its statewide Alliance Schools Initiative to develop parent, teacher and community capacity to transform low-performing schools into high achieving centers for community-wide change.
Whether in community organizing efforts or through her leadership on the national board of Parents for Public Schools, Myrna cemented her professional ‘north star’ orientation early: to center the needs of students and parents and give their children high-quality education opportunities when faced with so few equitable choices. Her passion for this critical work is personal too – as a single mother and an immigrant – driven by what she knows is possible when commitment, opportunity and urgency meet to help families carve out better futures.
Myrna is a member of the Aspen Pahara Education Fellowship’s eighth class and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. Myrna and her son share their home with two black cats and the six different brass instruments her son plays in his quest to feature in a college marching band.