Dr. Frances Gipson honored with a Center for Digital Education Top 30 award

LOS ANGELES (Sept. 7, 2017) - Chief Academic Officer Frances Gipson was named today as a national leader in education technology by the Center for Digital Education in recognition of her leadership in leveraging classroom technology to engage students and spur academic success.

Dr. Gipson is among the organization’s Top 30 – the technologists, transformers and trailblazers who are revolutionizing the education landscape through the use of digital tools.

“Dr. Gipson helped us refocus our vision of technology, and we are now using it as a tool to ensure that our students graduate as digital learners, thinkers and collaborators,” said Superintendent Michelle King. “She is an inspirational and innovative leader, and we congratulate her on this well-deserved honor.”

As the head of the Division of Instruction and chair of the 60-member Instructional Technology Initiative Task Force, Dr. Gipson helped guide the development and implementation of digital-learning strategies that empower students to achieve. Following recommendations produced by the Task Force, schools are using technology to personalize instruction, increase academic rigor and create a more flexible and student-centered learning environment.

"It is no surprise to me that Dr. Gipson is being recognized as a trailblazer because she continues to transform the way L.A. Unified approaches the use of instructional technology," said School Board President Dr. Ref Rodriguez. "She is an innovative thinker whose leadership on the Task Force has revealed the power that strong collaboration and an exchange of ideas can have on the work of this District. Dr. Gipson is solutions-oriented, leads with her heart, and always ensures that she puts our students at the forefront of every decision she makes." 

The Center for Digital Education is a national research and advisory institute specializing in technology trends, policy and funding in K-12 and higher education. Its annual Top 30 awards recognize leaders and innovators who are transforming the education landscape through the use of digital tools. Past winners include Hadi Partov, the CEO of Code.org; and Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, who launched the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative. 

“Our winners have shown an immense amount of passion and courage as they take on education in an era that encompasses rapid changes,” said Dr. Kecia Ray, the center’s executive director. “They have demonstrated a unique ability to use technology as a catalyst to transform education at all levels and to have a positive impact on student success.”

Known for her passionate support of education – a philosophy she calls “Team Kid” – Dr. Gipson started her educational career in L.A. Unified more than 20 years ago as a teacher at 107th Street Elementary School. She later served as principal of El Sereno Middle School, as an Administrator of Instruction and as superintendent of Local District East. Having worked in higher education at UCLA and California State University Los Angeles, Dr. Gipson continues to collaborate with institutions of higher education in supporting students as they prepare for college and careers. She also received The Excellence in Urban Leadership Award from Claremont Graduate University.

“This recognition is reflective of a learning organization that is leading with instruction to empower our learners as computational thinkers, creative communicators and global collaborators in a digital world,” Dr. Gipson said. “We remain committed to collaboratively focusing on leveraging our digital resources to empower learners and personalize achievement as we prepare our students for college and career.”


Contact: Shannon Haber (213) 241-6766