Press Release
June 21, 2013

Mayor Emanuel Announces Deborah Quazzo to Serve as a Member of the Chicago Board of Education

Quazzo Brings Unique Combination of Local and National Experience as a Lifelong Advocate for Quality Education
Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Mayor Rahm Emanuel today named Deborah Quazzo to serve as a member of the Chicago Board of Education. A life-long advocate for providing children with an education that prepares them for college, career and life, Quazzo will help the Board work to ensure Chicago’s students have access to the high-quality education they deserve.

“Deborah has been a strong advocate for students throughout her career and personal life, from supporting innovative ideas for improving education to providing one-on-one mentorship to students,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Deborah brings a valuable perspective that will help make sure we can provide all of our students with a path to a bright future.”

Quazzo, a small business owner, is founder and managing partner of GSV Advisors, a firm that provides advisory services to companies in the education and business services sectors. GSV Advisors also works with Arizona State University, the nation’s largest public university, to co-host the annual ASU GSV Education Innovation Summit which celebrates innovations and innovators across the education sector from early childhood to lifelong learning.

“Improving education for Chicago’s children requires everyone to share responsibility – from parents to educators to the community,” said Quazzo. “I am honored to have the chance to serve the students of Chicago through the Board of Education and look forward to working with stakeholders across the spectrum to achieve our shared goal of providing every child with a high-quality education.”

She is the chair of the board of Marwen, a visual arts education provider for underserved Chicago youth; is an ex officio board member of The Chicago Public Education Fund and previously served on the boards of New Schools for Chicago and the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), and America’s Promise Alliance, an organization that is committed to seeing that children get the resources they need in order to ensure they are prepared for college and a modern economy. In these roles, Quazzo has championed programs and initiatives that promote professional development for teachers, tackle truancy, infuse the arts into education, and work to increase the nationwide college graduation rate.

“Deborah presents a diverse knowledge of both education and sound fiscal practice that will help her be a strong voice on the Board and we welcome this appointment, ” said David Vitale, President of the Board of Education. “With her firm commitment to Chicago’s students, coupled with her experience as a strategic advisor, she will be a great asset as we continue to work to provide every child with a quality education.”

 

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About Deborah Quazzo

Quazzo currently is the managing partner at GSV Advisors, which she founded in 2009 to support the development of innovative ideas in the education and business services sectors through advisory services, working with emerging companies as well as sophisticated industry leaders. GSV Advisors also co-hosts the annual ASU GSV Education Innovation Summit, which celebrates new ideas across the education sector from early childhood to lifelong learning. Prior to GSV Advisors, Deborah co-founded ThinkEquity Partners, an investment bank with offices across the nation, and served as the company’s President and Head of Investment Banking. Previously, Deborah was a Managing Director in Investment Banking and head of the Global Growth Group at Merrill Lynch & Co. and began her career at J.P. Morgan. Deborah is Chairman of the Board of Marwen, a visual arts education provider for underserved Chicago youth and is a member of the board of Steppenwolf Theater Company.  She is also ex officio board member of The Chicago Public Education Fund and previously served on the boards of America’s Promise Alliance in Washington, D. C. (core advocates for underserved youth in America), KIPP Chicago (Knowledge is Power Program), New Schools for Chicago, Teach for America Chicago and the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship in Chicago (NFTE).  She is the proud mother of three children. Deborah earned her Bachelor’s degree from Princeton University in 1982 and earned an MBA from Harvard University in 1987.