Florida A&M University (FAMU) has hired two distinguished educators to fill key leadership roles in the College of Education.
Allyson L. Watson, Ph.D., an innovator and expert in urban education, has been named dean of the College of Education. Micheal Johnson, a veteran educator and administrator in the Denver (Colorado) Public Schools (DPS), has been named the new superintendent of the Florida A&M University Development Research School (FAMU DRS). Both Watson and Johnson will begin work on July 1, 2019.
Watson has been the dean of the College of Education at the University of South Florida-St. Petersburg (USF-SP) since July 2017. Before that she served as assistant dean, professor and the first-named endowed chair for Urban Education, Outreach and Research at Northeastern State University in Oklahoma.
“Dr. Watson is a dynamic and innovative leader,” said Maurice Edington, Ph.D., provost and vice president of Academic Affairs. “She will be a great addition to our team, and I have no doubt that she will provide excellent leadership and vision for the College of Education.”
After earning her bachelor’s at Bethune-Cookman University, Watson went on to complete her master’s and doctoral degrees in educational administration, curriculum and supervision from the University of Oklahoma. As a full professor and graduate faculty member, she taught courses on educational research, advanced educational measurements and statistics, public school relations and instructional strategies.
“FAMU has been a beacon for preparation in teacher education and I look forward to promoting the education profession with vision and vigor,” Watson said. “I wholeheartedly look forward to contributing to the institution’s mission, vision and values.”
Johnson was the senior adviser for equity for DPS, where he supported and collaborated with school leaders to improve their equity strategies and initiatives. The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff graduate was also responsible for the district’s Black Male Initiative program, which encourages, motivates and uplifts African American males. Johnson previously served as an instructional superintendent, executive principal and a high school principal while at DPS.
“We’re looking forward to Micheal Johnson taking the helm at FAMU DRS,” said Provost Edington. “His experience as an educator and administrator will serve our students and faculty very well.”
Johnson holds a Master of Arts in Administration, Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Colorado. He completed the Public Education Leadership program at Harvard University and is a 2019 graduate of the National Superintendent Academy.
“I am excited about this unique opportunity with FAMU DRS,” Johnson said. “As an Historically Black College and University (HBCU) alumnus, I am honored to serve our community in this capacity and I look forward to working with this dynamic team to lead DRS to new heights.”