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August 29, 2005

Jennifer Fennell or
Cheryl Etters
(850) 245-0413

Education Commissioner Appoints Cheri Yecke
New K-12 Chancellor

TALLAHASSEE — Education Commissioner John L. Winn today appointed Cheri Yecke, Ph.D., as the new Florida K-12 Chancellor. Yecke replaces former Chancellor James Warford, who stepped down last month. She will assume the role of Chancellor the first week in October.

“Cheri is a lifelong and award-winning educator with unique insight into leading a statewide education system,” said Commissioner Winn. “Her strong stance on accountability and middle school reform closely align with Florida’s educational priorities. I look forward to having Cheri as part of the team and welcome her to our state.”

Yecke, 50, most recently served as Distinguished Senior Fellow for Education and Social Policy at the Center of the American Experiment. Previously, she served as Commissioner of Education for the State of Minnesota. Her prior education service includes Senior Advisor for USA Freedom Corps, The White House, and Director of Teacher Quality and Public School Choice for the U.S. Department of Education. In addition, Yecke served as Secretary of Education for the Commonwealth of Virginia, a member of the Virginia State Board of Education and a classroom teacher.

A native of Minnesota, Yecke received a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Hawaii, a master’s degree in teaching from the University of Wisconsin, and a doctoral degree form in educational psychology from the University of Virginia. Her book, “The War Against Excellence: The Rising Tide of Mediocrity in America’s Middle Schools,” was released in 2003.