He will receive the award and give a keynote speech at the annual Kappa Delta Pi and SOE Awards Ceremony on April 24, 2016, at the Hilton Center for Business.
Kirst, who is a professor emeritus of education and business administration at Stanford University, is being recognized for his extraordinary leadership and his dedication to educational policy reform and student success.
“We are honored to present Dr. Michael Kirst with the LMU School of Education’s Educator of the Year Award for his accomplishments as an educational leader, in both policy and practice,” said Shane P. Martin, dean and professor of the SOE. “This award is a testament to Dr. Kirst’s significant impact on the lives of students, families, and educators through his expertise and vision, which contributes so much to the common good of society.”
Kirst co-founded Policy Analysis for California Education, a nonpartisan research center that works to increase the impact of academic research on educational policy in the state. He has written ten books and numerous articles on school finance politics, curriculum politics, intergovernmental relations, as well as education reform policies. Kirst earned his Ph.D. in political economy and government from Harvard University.
He joined the Stanford faculty in 1969 after holding numerous federal government positions, including staff director of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Manpower, Employment and Poverty and director of Program Planning and Evaluation for Elementary and Secondary Education in the U.S. Office of Education (now the U.S. Department of Education).
Kirst, who was appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown during his first stint as governor, is the longest-serving president of the State Board of Education in California’s history, having returned to the position during the governor’s third and fourth terms.
Past recipients of the SOE’s Educator of the Year Award include Kevin Baxter (M.A. ’01), senior director and superintendent of Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, Patricia Gándara, research professor of education and co-director of the Civil Rights Project/Proyecto Derechos Civiles at UCLA, Father Gregory Boyle of Homeboy Industries, and former Colorado Gov. Roy Romer, who led the Los Angeles Unified School District, among others.