RALEIGH, N.C. — WakeEd Partnership (WakeEd), a business-backed nonprofit organization committed to supporting teachers and students in the Wake County Public School System (WCPSS), has named Keith Poston its new President. Poston will succeed Steve Parrott who retired in December. Caroline McCullen has been serving as Interim President.
“I am thrilled to have Keith lead our great organization going forward,” said WakeEd Partnership Board Chairman John Hummel. “Keith brings a wealth of experience in education nonprofits, education policy, fundraising, and board development and I am excited to start the new era of WakeEd Partnership with him.”
From 2014 to 2019, Keith served as President and Executive Director of the Public School Forum of North Carolina, leading the statewide public education nonprofit during a critical juncture in its 33-year history. During his tenure, the Forum launched several new initiatives including Color of Education, a partnership with the Samuel DuBois Cook Center for Social Equity at Duke and Duke Policy Bridge at the Sanford School of Public Policy focused on racial equity and The NC Resilience & Learning Project, a statewide effort to help schools better support children dealing with trauma and adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). Keith also developed and hosted the Public School Forum’s weekly television show “Education Matters” from 2016-2019, which airs on WRAL-TV and FOX 50 in Central and Eastern NC, and on UNC-TV’s NC Channel statewide.
“I’m excited by the opportunity to lead a wonderful and vital organization like WakeEd Partnership,” Poston said. “I’ve had the chance to work with WakeEd both as a partner and as a corporate investor over the years, so I’ve seen up close the passion and expertise they bring to supporting our public schools, teachers, students, and families here in Wake County.”
“While we are facing unprecedented challenges as a nation, if COVID-19 has reinforced anything to me it’s the central role our public schools hold in this community and every community across the country,” Poston continued. “I am eager to help WakeEd Partnership play an important role as our community recovers and comes back together in our public school classrooms stronger and better than ever.”
Immediately prior to joining WakeEd, Keith led Poston & Associates that counseled organizations in communications strategy, issues management, education policy, development and fundraising.
Keith previously served as the Senior Director of Community Investment for Time Warner Cable, where he led strategic philanthropy and community engagement for the company’s East Coast operations. Prior to that, he was Managing Director of Corporate Communications at AGL Resources in Atlanta, Director of Public Relations and Employee Communications for Progress Energy (now Duke Energy), and Vice President/Account Supervisor at Ketchum Public Relations in Washington, D.C.
Keith is Past President of the Friends of the NC Museum of Natural Sciences Board of Directors, and also served on the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center Advisory Board and the Kenan Fellows Program Board of Advisors. Keith is a Leadership North Carolina graduate and received the “40 under 40” Leadership Award in 2004 from the Triangle Business Journal. Keith received his bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
About WakeEd Partnership
WakeEd Partnership is an independent, nonprofit organization composed of business and community leaders committed to improving public education. Since 1983, the Partnership has advocated for excellent educational opportunities for all students in the Wake County Public School System.