AIR Adds Business Leaders to Board

Washington, D.C. The Board of Directors of the American Institutes for Research (AIR) has voted unanimously to add two new members to the nonprofit organization’s Board: David Kearns, former Chairman and CEO of the Xerox Corp., and Charles Lee, former Chairman and co-CEO of Verizon Communications.

Both Kearns and Lee are nationally respected business leaders with strong commitments to high-quality education and the development of young people.

Kearns is well known for his leadership at Xerox, where he demonstrated that American business could reinvent itself and compete successfully in a global economy. He served as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education from 1991 through 1993. He currently serves on the Executive Committee for the Harvard Project on Schooling & Children.  

Lee recently retired as chairman and co-CEO of Verizon Communications, the company formed by the merger of GTE and Bell Atlantic. Before the merger, Lee was chairman and chief executive officer of GTE Corporation.  

“We welcome the addition of both individuals,” said Sol Pelavin, AIR President and CEO, who also is a member of the Board of Directors. “Both bring tremendous commitment, vision and track record of success. Their addition to the board strengthens AIR’s efforts to tackle some of the world’s most intractable challenges.”

Kearns is a member of the Board of Directors of Ryder System, Inc. and a former director of the Chase Manhattan Bank and Time Warner, Inc. In addition, he serves as a Trustee of the University of Rochester and the Ford Foundation.  He is a member of The Business Council and the American Philosophical Society. He has served as Chairman of the Board for the National Urban League, Junior Achievement, and the University of Rochester. Kearns has written three books. His most recent book, A Legacy of Learning, co-authored with James Harvey, analyzes the difficulty of transforming American schools and calls for a new definition of “public education.”

Lee is a Director of USX Corporation, United Technologies Corporation and the Procter & Gamble Company.  He also is a member of the New American Realities Committee of the National Policy Association and is a Trustee Emeritus and Presidential Councilor of Cornell University.  He serves on the Board of Directors of the Stamford, Conn., Hospital Foundation.  He is a member of the Business Roundtable, The Business Council and the Financial Executives Institute.

Lee served as director of New American Schools along with Mr. Kearns who was a founder of the education nonprofit that will complete a merger with AIR in January 2005. New American Schools is best known for establishing a comprehensive approach to school reform built on best practices in business. The approach shaped the education reform landscape through its emphasis on coherent strategy, integrated systems, and a solid research base as keys to school improvement.

The American Institutes for Research, founded in 1946, is a leader in behavioral and social science research. AIR is a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization engaged in domestic and international research, development, evaluation, analysis, product development, training and technical assistance and assessment. 

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