As the Vice President of Strategy and Innovation for the Campaign for Black Male Achievement (CBMA), Robert W. Simmons III, EdD is responsible for the national implementation and development of CBMA’s place-based efforts to improve the life outcomes for Black men and boys. Using the CBMA Bold Goal and High School Excellence Framework, Robert is charged with partnering with communities to support their efforts, and invest CBMA resources, to accelerate the rate at which Black boys complete high school college, career and community ready.
Prior to joining CBMA Robert served as the first Chief of Innovation & Research in the District of Columbia Public Schools where he managed numerous initiatives in the district, including the launching of the first single gender school in the history of DCPS, and serving as the chief architect of the nationally recognized Empowering Males of Color initiative. Robert also served as the director of the Center for Innovation in Urban Education and the Institute for Urban Catholic Education at Loyola University Maryland. While at Loyola, Robert was a tenured professor of urban education and science education, and associated faculty member in African and African American Studies program. Robert also held a joint appointment as a research associate at the Baltimore Education Research Consortium at Johns Hopkins University. While a middle school science teacher in the Detroit Public Schools, Robert was nominated twice as the Walt Disney National Teacher of the Year and once for the Whitney and Elizabeth MacMillan Foundation Outstanding Educator Award.
Robert has been a fellow with the Woodrow Wilson Fellowship Foundation and the Japan Fulbright Memorial Fund. The author of over 40 publications, including the book, Talking About Race: Alleviating the Fear (2013), his time as a researcher focused on the experiences of African American boys in public and Catholic schools, science education in urban schools, African American male teachers, urban education, and the role of race in understanding the social context of schooling. Robert’s most notable academic accomplishment during his time as a professor was his role as a co-PI in the development the virtual science labs with the Mind Project.