John B. King Jr. is president and CEO of The Education Trust, a national nonprofit organization that aims to identify and close opportunity and achievement gaps, from preschool through college. He previously served as the U.S. Secretary of Education from 2016 through 2017. In tapping him to lead the U.S. Department of Education, President Obama called King “an exceptionally talented educator,” citing his commitment to “preparing every child for success” and his lifelong dedication to education as a teacher, principal, and leader of schools and school systems.
Prior to his appointment, King served as deputy secretary, overseeing all preschool through 12th-grade education policies and programs as well as department operations. King joined the department following his tenure as the first African-American and Puerto Rican to serve as the education commissioner for New York, a post he held from 2011 to 2015. He previously served as a high school social studies teacher in Puerto Rico and Boston and a middle school principal.