Shirley M. Hord, Ph.D., is Program Manager at the Southwest Educational Development Laboratory in Austin, Texas, where she directs the Strategies for Increasing School Success Program and where she continues to monitor the Leadership For Change Project. In addition, she designs and coordinates professional development activities related to educational change, school improvement, and school leadership.
Early in her career, she served as a public school classroom teacher and on university faculty in the college of education. In her prior role as Co-Director of Research on the Improvement Process at the Research and Development Center for Teacher Education at The University of Texas at Austin, she administered and conducted research on school change and the role of school leadership in school reform. She served as a Fellow of the National Center for Effective Schools Research and Development and was U.S. representative to the Foundation for the International School Improvement Project, an international effort that develops research, training, and policy initiatives to support local school improvement practices. In addition to working with educators at all levels across the U.S. and Canada, Hord has made presentations and done consulting in Asia, Europe, Australia, and Africa.
Today, her current interests focus on qualitative research into understanding and delivering comprehensive educational reform to schools and articulating the value of staff development. She is also committed to the creation and function of educational organizations as learning communities, as well as defining the roles of leaders who serve such organizations.