National Writing Project

NWP Executive Director Richard Sterling Plans 2008 Departure

For Immediate Release


BERKELEY, CA, June 7, 2007—Richard Sterling, Executive Director of the National Writing Project (NWP), announced today he will step down, effective in early 2008. He has led the organization since 1994.

"For twelve years the NWP has flourished under Richard Sterling's exceptional leadership," said NWP Chairman of the Board Daniel Boggan Jr., former Senior Vice President of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and current Chief of Staff for Oakland, California Mayor Ron Dellums. "Richard has been a passionate advocate for the teaching of writing to students at all grade levels, and he has launched innovative programs to expand the reach of the NWP to serve ever more teachers and students in the nation's schools."

Board Vice-Chair, Augusta Souza Kappner, President of Bank Street College of Education, said, "During Richard's tenure, the NWP emerged as the foremost organization dedicated to the improvement of writing—the `go-to' organization for teachers and policymakers alike. Richard remained true to the NWP's founding principles while vastly extending its reach and influence. His successor will inherit a legacy that will continue to inspire innovation and dedication to the teaching of writing."

Sterling said the decision to step down was a difficult one. "It has been an honor to be part of the remarkable network of teachers that defines the NWP and a privilege to serve as its Executive Director. I leave with a sense of excitement about the future of the NWP, confident that it will continue to thrive under the guidance of the outstanding people who make up our Board of Directors, staff, and network leaders. Their dedication to teaching excellence and their belief in the talented teachers of writing who participate in NWP programs are inspirational. I look forward to continued involvement with this remarkable cadre of friends and colleagues," Sterling said.

During Sterling's tenure as Executive Director of the NWP, the organization grew dramatically in terms of resources, reputation, and scope of services. Sterling oversaw an increase in online publications and resources for teachers, a diversification in the professional development offerings, and an expanded investment in national research on the effectiveness of the project's work. Before becoming Executive Director of the NWP he was a faculty member at Lehman College, City University of New York, where he founded and directed the New York City Writing Project and the New York City Mathematics Project, both of which are housed within the Institute for Literacy Studies. Since 2003, Sterling has chaired the Advisory Panel to the College Board's National Commission on Writing for America's Families, Schools, and Colleges. He remains Adjunct Professor in the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Berkeley.


The National Writing Project is the most significant coordinated effort to improve writing in America. NWP sites, located on nearly 200 university and college campuses, serve more than 135,000 educators annually. NWP continues to add new sites each year with the goal of placing the writing project within reach of every teacher in America. Through its professional development model, NWP develops the leadership, programs, and research needed for teachers to help students become successful writers and learners.

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