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CFT’s Education Expertise

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CFT’s Education Expertise

Educate Texas’ J. Chris Coxon and Dr. Reo Pruiett are agents of change

Most people see community foundations as conveners, funders and collaborators connecting donors to critical community needs. We are proud to play those roles here in North Texas and beyond, but we also create statewide impact through Educate Texas, the public-private partnership we’ve built in collaboration with many national, statewide and local philanthropic organizations, businesses, policymakers, school districts, colleges, universities, state agencies and community organizations.

As the only community foundation in the nation with an educational consultancy, CFT is uniquely positioned to leverage partnerships to strengthen our Texas education system.  Below are brief spotlights highlighting two of our Educate Texas leaders whose work is integral to our success in implementing best practices and expanding scale across the state. Read the extended feature about their work and  perspectives on education at CFTexas.org/ChrisandReo.


Managing Director, Educate Texas 

Path to CFT: Chris has held several educational leadership positions including teacher, teacher leader, district administrator, principal  and deputy superintendent, and is  a graduate of Harvard’s Urban Superintendents Program. During his time as a superintendent, his district received the Broad Prize for Urban Education for decreasing achievement  gaps and improving academic gains.

Educate Texas Collaborative Highlights: Since 2007, Chris has led efforts across Educate Texas’ four impact areas: College and Career Readiness, Effective Teaching, Higher Education, and Collective Impact, aligning resources and support to improve educational outcomes for low-income, minority and first-generation students. He was integral in the launch of RGV FOCUS, Educate Texas’ successful collective impact initiative focused on college readiness, access and success in the Rio Grande Valley.

Educate Texas is here to understand challenges and work side by side to provide a systems approach, scaling solutions through public policy and by building coalitions and partnership networks. Businesses, nonprofits, educators, policy and philanthropy all play a role in creating an educated community, and we’re able to help convene and align partners to positively impact Texas students.

- Dr. Reo Pruiett, Ed.D, Senior Director, Programs, Educate Texas

Path to CFT: A proud career  educator for over 30 years, Reo has served in roles such as district science specialist, new teacher supervisor, director of secondary education,  vice principal, principal and district director. For years, she mentored educational leaders and built successful partnerships  for districts through philanthropic and corporate support and higher education institutions.

Educate Texas Collaborative Highlights: Since 2008, Reo  has helped Educate Texas expand support from 15 T-STEM campuses to more than 300 campuses through the Texas Education Agency’s College and Career Readiness School Models network. In partnership with the Texas Instruments Foundation, Reo played an integral role in the development of a districtwide STEM project at Lancaster ISD, as well as the development of Richardson ISD’s new STEM feeder pattern within the Lloyd V. Berkner High School attendance zone, supporting 16 schools serving 10,000 students.

“We don’t do easy work. We go after work that is difficult, seeking innovative solutions to long-term problems to create equity in education. We want our educational system to work for all Texas students. CFT’s Educate Texas provides a multiplier effect and a village of support to change the outcomes for students and communities by increasing opportunities for students to be college, career and  workforce ready.”

Nicole Paquette
Nicole Paquette
Senior Director, Communications, Public Relations, and External Affairs

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