Tracey Weinstein (she/her) is Vice President of Program at Deans for Impact, where she oversees the organization's work to provide teachers and teacher-educators with tools and resources to improve their practice and deliver more rigorous, affirming, and equitable learning experiences for their students. Tracey is a proud California native who received her Bachelor’s degree in history from the University of California, Davis (Go Aggies!) and her Ph.D. in Education Policy from the University of Southern California. Prior to joining DFI, she worked on education policy at a national education non-profit and as an educational researcher examining the implementation and impacts of district-level accountability policies on teacher's labor market behavior and beliefs and mindsets about instruction. Tracey loves the San Diego Padres, wine-tasting, and cooking for family and friends!
What compels you about DFI's mission of ensuring that every child has a well-prepared teacher?
What compels me most about DFI’s mission is that I believe achieving it is not only important in its own right but is essential for a more just society. There isn’t a version of a future I want for my kids that doesn’t require all children to receive an education that recognizes and celebrates their brilliance, nurtures and affirms their identities, and gives them the tools to turn curiosity into learning and learning into understanding. This is the work that well-prepared teachers do and it is incredibly hard. I feel compelled to do whatever I can to support teachers to do this hard work well because all children deserve it, and the future I want for my kids demands it.
What do you enjoy most about working at DFI?
What I enjoy most about working at DFI are the brilliant, kind, and beautiful humans on our team who I get to learn from every day. It is so energizing to be surrounded by a group of people who see the big, ugly, complicated problems that make it so difficult to ensure that every child has a well-prepared teacher not as insurmountable, but as solvable, and then to get to work with them every day to try and build something better for children. Add to that the amazing educators and leaders we get to work alongside and it really is magic.
What's a principle, philosophy, or quote you live by, and why?
I read something somewhere that Barack Obama said about empathy that has stuck with me for many years. He said, "Empathy is a quality of character that can change the world - one that makes you understand that your obligations to others extend beyond people who look like you and act like you and live in your neighborhood." I think if we could more consistently center empathy in all aspects of our lives - how we interact with one another, the decisions we make, the obligations we recognize and choose to fulfill- we'd be living in a world that is far more just and good for far more people. And that is a world I want.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
I love to cook (the more adventurous the recipe the better), drink wine, stream all the trending reality shows with wild abandon and no regard for quality, and spend time laughing with family and friends.