NCTR Welcomes New CEO, New Vision For the Future


September 12, 2022 — On June 1, 2022, the National Center for Teacher Residencies (NCTR), the only national organization dedicated to developing, launching and supporting teacher residency programs across the United States, welcomed its new and only second CEO, after the organization’s previous CEO and founder, Anissa Listak, stepped down to pursue new opportunities after leading the organization since its inception in 2007. 

NCTR CEO Kathlene H. Campbell, Ph.D., brings a wealth of knowledge and experience of teacher residency programs as well as a shared passion for advancing the national teacher residency movement. Dr. Campbell also brings a familiarity to the organization as a former NCTR staff member.

“In a sense, coming to NCTR is returning home for me,” said Dr. Campbell. “As a former NCTR program director, my return has brought me back to working towards our shared purpose to disrupt educational inequities by advancing the teacher residency movement to ensure all students, especially those from historically marginalized backgrounds and low-income areas, have access to effective, diverse and culturally responsive educators.”

Prior to her current role at NCTR, Dr. Campbell served as the dean of the School of Education at the University of St. Thomas – a NCTR Network partner – where she led relationships with local schools and districts to ensure that residency candidates have the support and experiences they need during their residency year experience. Dr. Campbell’s multifaceted experience also includes time as a classroom teacher, community college and state college professor, state college interim dean, university instructor and supervisor, and nonprofit consultant. 

As a researcher and professor, Dr. Campbell embedded clinical interdisciplinary placements into her courses by partnering with elementary schools particularly focused on social justice and equity. Beginning in 2009, Dr. Campbell worked with the National Urban Alliance for Effective Education (NUA), helping teachers improve their practice and infuse culturally relevant teaching practices into their classrooms.

“She is a true champion of the residency model and its power to change the way teachers are prepared,” said NCTR Board Chair Laura Weeldryer. “As Kathlene takes the helm of this dynamic organization, she joins a staff that is forging new ground in the residency movement.” 

Dr. Campbell’s arrival comes at a time when there is a resurgence of interest in teacher residencies to help fill teacher vacancies across the nation. With U.S. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona’s call to action for the states, school districts and higher education institutions, as well as the Biden-Harris Administration’s recent plan, to address the national teacher shortage, teacher residency programs and the residency model are receiving recognition that validates the work and positive impact of residency programs to strengthen the national teaching workforce.

“There’s a renewed energy for teacher residencies that I only anticipate will amplify our impact,” Dr. Campbell said. “Through collaboration with our partners and a new strategic vision, we are a contributing solution to our nation’s teacher shortage, and we will continue our important work to recruit and retain effective, diverse educators for the classroom because we believe every student across the U.S. deserves access to quality diverse teachers.” 

To learn more about Dr. Campbell, visit the NCTR website for her bio.