Executive Director of Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools
RaShaun Holliman is the inaugural Executive Director of the Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools. He comes to FCCS with extensive expertise in educational leadership, having served in the capacity of teacher, principal, state education agency leader, and advocate. He most recently served as Senior Vice President of the Georgia Charter Schools Association (GCSA), where he oversaw efforts to pass charter-friendly legislation. RaShaun has served as Director of the Office of Community Schools at the Ohio Department of Education (ODE). This state office was responsible for the oversight of Ohio's charter schools and their authorizers. Under his leadership, Ohio implemented major reforms in authorizer quality and charter school standards aimed at improving the outcomes of more than 300 schools enrolling over 125,000 students. Prior to joining ODE, RaShaun served briefly as President and CEO of the Ohio Alliance of Public Charter Schools.
Prior to his work in Ohio, he served as Vice President of Outreach and Communications for GCSA, where he led statewide advocacy efforts and traveled the state of Georgia training petitioners in local communities to develop high quality charter schools. RaShaun began his career in education as an instructional aide. He became the Principal of Focus Learning Academy East in Columbus, Ohio, a dropout prevention charter high school serving majority Black students, at the age of twenty-seven.
Originally from Columbus, Ohio, RaShaun received his B.A. in Political Science from Wright State University and Masters in Educational Leadership from Capella University. He is based in Atlanta, Georgia where is an active member of his community.
DR. MARGARET FORTUNE
Co Chair of Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools
Margaret Fortune is changing what’s possible when you create excellent educational options for Black children. As the President/CEO of nine K-12 public charter schools in Sacramento and San Bernardino counties with a combined enrollment of more than 2,200 students, Fortune’s work is pointed towards one North Star - to close the African American achievement gap.
Fortune also operates Rex & Margaret Fortune School of Education, credentialing teachers and administrators for over 60 public school systems with the goal of addressing the state’s teacher shortage by producing quality, diverse teachers in high-need subject areas. Fortune School of Education’s charter school leadership program has also been critical in developing a pipeline of strong educators in the movement. In 2017, Fortune founded an early college high school in partnership with Cosumnes River College and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo focused on science, technology, engineering, art and math. Students are able to earn a high school diploma and associate’s degree in general science upon graduation.
As a nationally sought-after education expert, Fortune is often invited to participate in or lead conversations detailing the Fortune School approach to successfully educating Black children. She led the efforts that resulted in the State of California budgeting a new $300 million block grant in 2018 for the lowest-performing students. A graduate of UC Berkeley and Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, Fortune served as education adviser to two California governors. Fortune is a Trustee Emerita of the California State University, a Pahara-Aspen Fellow and board chair for the California Charter Schools Association. She was awarded an honorary doctorate from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo for her substantial contributions to the field of education.
Most recently, Margaret was inducted into the National Charter School Hall of Fame for pioneering the development and growth of charter schools, implementing innovative ideas, and inspiring others in the movement. Margaret continues to increase her national footprint through her work as a Co-Chair of the Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools, a national organization founded to protect the right of “self-determination” of parent choice for Black and Latino families and as the Secretary-Treasurer of the California State National Action Network.
DR. STEVE PERRY
Co Chair of Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools
Perry is also a CNN, MSNBC & Essence Education Contributor. Host of Hit TV Show "Save My Son". Dr. Steve Perry’s heart pumps passion and produces positive change. Featured in CNN's Black in America series, Dr. Perry is the most talked about innovative educator on the scene today. Perry is the founder and principal of what U.S. News and World Report has cited as one of the top schools in the country, Capital Preparatory Magnet School in Hartford, Connecticut.
As Head of Capital Preparatory Schools with locations in Bridgeport CT Capital Prep Harbor & Harlem NY Capital Prep Harlem; His goal is to ensure that his students receive a high-quality education from K- 12 and into college by ensuring that our educators receive the proper professional development training and support system needed in our schools for a successful academic environment. This commitment to excellence in education led Capital Preparatory School to what U.S. News and World Report have cited as one of the top schools in the country, Sending 100% of its predominantly low-income, minority, first-generation high school graduates to four-year colleges every year since inception in 2006. Subsequently, this success led him to open other Capital Preparatory Schools in 2012 with the objective to open charter schools that will provide as many low-income students/families with an educational experience that I consider a right, not just an opportunity.