Adrian J. (AJ) DeLeón is a first-generation college graduate whose passion to achieve equity and excellence for students has guided his professional career. In his work, AJ is always willing to learn new tactics and work with others to design creative solutions to the challenges they face. His work has proven to him that by investing in people and promoting new ideas in organizations, sustainable social change will occur.
In his first job out of college, as a youth coach in a nonprofit organization, AJ supported students by designing the curriculum for and teaching in a college readiness program serving low-income Latino youth. Later, in an effort to scale his impact, AJ joined Chicago Public Schools (CPS) to coach teachers and counselors in the implementation of a U.S. Department of Education-funded college readiness program (GEARUP), serving disenfranchised areas throughout the city. As a result of his work, AJ was later promoted to manage the largest region of CPS schools implementing the AVID program in Chicago, where he worked to develop the capacity of teachers, counselors, and principals in his portfolio to build college-ready cultures in their schools that led to increased AP achievement, financial aid literacy, and access to college options for students in those communities.
After serving in several strategic roles at the district level of Chicago Public Schools -- including project manager, where he helped define the key performance indicators of the departments that encompassed the office that supports college readiness in the district -- AJ decided to become an EP Fellow. He wanted to combine his skills in teaching, data analysis, staff development, change management, and strategic planning to accelerate student achievement.
- Data & Analysis
- Program & Project Management
- Strategy & Planning
Chicago Public Schools (CPS) serves 400,000 students in over 600 schools. As a Fellow for one of the 13 K-12 networks in CPS, AJ analyzed teacher and student data to help produce a new data-driven system of professional development and performance management for 36 schools. The system allowed leaders of the schools to better target support for their staff, including training teachers to better use data to inform instruction.
At CPS, AJ also trained school leaders of low- and high-performing schools to use analytics and strategic planning to ensure continuous improvement. As a result of his work, and his collaboration with coworkers and other data strategists in the district, the schools he worked with improved dramatically, with some achieving local and national recognition.
AJ currently advises a range of leaders from principals, nonprofit and school systems leaders, to his own organization’s CEO in his current position with CSC Consulting Group.
AJ was recognized as one of EP’s 10 EPic Alumni in 2016.