Bill Durbin
Academic and Program Strategy


Bill Durbin is a partner in the Strategic Advising practice area at Bellwether, specializing in academic and program strategy. Bill has worked in the education field for more than 22 years, focusing on district/network/school leader development, district/network/school performance management, and district/network growth strategy. Prior to Bellwether, Bill served as the chief of schools at DSST Public Schools in Denver. He was responsible for managing 12 schools and 5,000 students, leadership pipeline management, leader development programming, and the yearly school planning processes. He also served as YES Prep Public Schools’ head of schools from 2009 to 2014, where he was responsible for identifying, training, and managing school directors at the 13 YES Prep schools serving 8,000 students in Houston. As part of this work, Bill also served as a steering committee member for the SKY Partnership, a district-charter school partnership between Spring Branch Independent School District, KIPP Public Schools, and YES Prep Public Schools. Before managing the YES Prep portfolio of schools, Bill spent 2002 to 2009 co-founding and leading three schools: YES Prep North Central, YES Prep East End, and YES Prep Gulfton. Bill started his career in 1998 as a founding teacher at YES Prep Southeast.

Bill is a Pahara-Aspen Education Fellow. In 2010, he earned an MBA from Rice University as part of the Rice Entrepreneurship in Education Program. Bill also completed a master’s degree in educational administration and supervision at the University of Houston and a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Illinois. He currently lives in Houston.

Why I do this work:

A student’s ZIP code should not determine access to a quality education. I have committed my entire career to supporting organizations in their mission to increase the number of high-quality school options across all neighborhoods. I appreciate the opportunity to continue this work at Bellwether and to support organizations in their ambitious plans to ensure every student in America has access to a high-quality, equitable, and inclusive school option.

Experience at Bellwether:

Strategic Planning; Growth and Expansion Strategy; Human Capital/Organizational Design; Teacher Evaluation and Development Systems; Performance Improvement/Sustainability; Performance Metrics; Implementation Planning; Project Management; CMO/Charter School Operators; District Schools

Client segments served:

K-12 Schools; School Districts; CMO/Charter Schools; State Education Agencies; Foundations and Grantees; Nonprofit Organizations; Product and Service Providers

Sample clients:

Harmony Public Schools, International Leadership of Texas, Great MN Schools, Opportunity 180, NewSchools Venture Fund, Texas Education Agency

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