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Randy Spaulding

Executive Director

Randy joined SBE in 2018. Previously he had served as the Director of Academic Affairs and Policy at the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) and Higher Education Coordinating Board (HECB). His work focused on the intersections of secondary and postsecondary education to improve student transitions and raise educational attainment. At WSAC, Randy also led the development, in collaboration with a broad range of stakeholders and partner agencies, of the state’s first ongoing comprehensive assessment of state and regional student, economic, and community needs for postsecondary education. Prior to his work at the Council (HECB), Randy worked in student services, admissions, and financial aid at the University of Washington Bothell. Randy received his Ph.D. from the University of Washington in 2003. His research and policy work have been focused on issues of equity and human capital development. Randy is also an affiliate faculty member at University of Washington Bothell supporting the students in the legislative intern program.

Kaaren Heikes

Director of Policy and Partnerships

Kaaren joined SBE in 2016. She has spent the majority of her 25-year educational leadership career in Oregon: teaching, designing, founding/leading regional and state-level education initiatives, programs and nonprofit organizations - all supporting high-quality options within the public school system - and advocating in Oregon’s legislature for sound educational policies, particularly for historically underserved children. An Olympia-area native, she clerked during several legislative sessions for the Washington state Senate early in her career. Kaaren has a Master of Science in K-12 Policy and Administration, a B.A. in English, and certification in both in K-12 Administration and Secondary Teaching.

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Linda Drake

Director of Career- and College-Ready Initiatives

Linda Drake joined SBE in 2012. For over 10 years she worked at Pierce County Careers Connection as a project manager and as director. She led projects and initiatives supporting college-readiness and the successful transition of high school students to post-secondary education and careers, including the Tech Prep Dual Credit program for Pierce County. Linda holds a master’s degree in geology and geophysics and has experience in environmental consulting and in teaching university-level geology and oceanography.

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Alissa Muller

Communications Manager

Alissa joined SBE in 2017. Prior, she worked in communications positions in several Texas nonprofits, as an event planner, and as a campaign manager. Alissa holds her B.S. degree in Public Relations from the University of Texas and her Master of Public Administration degree from the Evans School at the University of Washington. Alissa enjoys reading, hiking, traveling and being a proud Navy wife.

Andrew Parr

Andrew Parr

Research Director

Andrew joined SBE in 2013. He moved to Olympia from Nevada where he most recently worked for the Department of Education’s Assessment and Accountability division. Andrew played a key role in the development and rollout of the Nevada School Performance Framework and the Nevada Growth Model. Prior to his work at the department, Andrew was a middle school classroom teacher, where he taught science and math. He earned his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from the University of Nevada, and his research interest centers on the educational outcomes of mobile or transient students.

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Parker Teed

Policy Analyst

Parker joined SBE in 2013. Parker has worked as operations and data coordinator, special assistant and communications consultant for SBE, a registration specialist at South Puget Sound Community College, an advertising manager at the SPSCC newspaper, and an initiative checker for the Office of Secretary of State. Parker earned his Master of Public Administration degree with a concentration in Public Policy from The Evergreen State College. He enjoys kayaking and international travel.

Tamara Jensen

Tamara Jensen

Executive Assistant

Tamara joined SBE in 2012. Tamara has worked as a Secretary Senior for SBE, Administrative Assistant for Olympia Vision Clinic and Dialysis Technician for Northwest Kidney Centers. She attended Washington State University and earned an Associates of Arts Degree from South Puget Sound Community College. Tamara has been a Licensed Practical Nurse since 1999 and enjoys volunteering for local charities. Tamara enjoys kayaking, traveling and is frequently found on the sidelines of her son's various sports activities, cheering the loudest.