January 1, 1970

Bellwether Partner Tina Fernandez to Lead New Initiative to Raise College Graduation Rates in Atlanta

By Bellwether

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WASHINGTON—Bellwether Education Partners announced today that Tina Fernandez, who co-leads Bellwether’s Talent Services team, will become the founding executive director of Achieve Atlanta, a new organization dedicated to dramatically increasing the number of Atlanta Public School students graduating from college.

Fernandez has been a part of Bellwether from its beginning, serving as a founding member of the board of directors and later as board chair. In 2014 she left the board to join Bellwether full-time and co-lead the organization’s work on building talent-ready and effective education organizations. Fernandez will rejoin the Bellwether board.

“I’m proud of how Bellwether grew into a highly reputable and effective organization, and I know that everything I learned during my time on the team will help me in this new venture aimed at positively impacting the life trajectories of kids and families in Atlanta,” said Fernandez.

At Achieve Atlanta, Fernandez will lead community-building efforts to ensure that many more students reach their college and career goals. Her last day at Bellwether will be June 25. She begins her new role on July 6.

“Tina is an integral part of our Talent Services practice and expanding our work around building diverse and inclusive organizations,” said Bellwether Managing Partner Mary Wells. “We are beyond grateful for her ongoing service to Bellwether and thrilled that Tina has the opportunity to lead an organization laser-focused on important issues of college access and completion in Atlanta.”

Before joining Bellwether, Fernandez was a clinical professor at the University of Texas School of Law and the founding director of the school’s Pro Bono Program, where she helped to increase the delivery of legal services to low-income people. She previously served as the managing director of Alumni Engagement & Infrastructure for Teach For America and as a litigation associate at Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P., where she also served on the firm’s diversity committee.

Fernandez, who is originally from the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, earned her bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and her Juris Doctor from Columbia University School of Law. Before attending law school, she was a Teach for America ’94 corps member and spent two years as a bilingual elementary teacher in the South Bronx. She was a member of the IDEA Public Schools national board of directors and a founding member of FuturoFund Austin, a philanthropic organization dedicated to supporting nonprofits impacting Latino communities in Central Texas. In Atlanta, Fernandez serves on the board of the Latin American Association and has been appointed by the governor to Georgia’s Education Reform Commission.


For More Information

Andrew J. Rotherham

Co-Founder and Partner, Bellwether Education Partners



About Bellwether Education Partners

Bellwether Education Partners is a nonprofit dedicated to helping education organizations in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors become more effective in their work and achieve dramatic results, especially for high-need students. For more information, visit http://bellwethereducation.org.


About Achieve Atlanta

Achieve Atlanta is committed to increasing the number of Atlanta Public School students who complete post-secondary education. As an independent 501(c)(3) organization, established in 2014 and governed by a board of directors drawn from a cross-section of visionary Atlanta leaders, the program is based in national best practices, current research and performance data. Substantial initial funding from the Joseph B. Whitehead Foundation will support this model for improving post-secondary success, beginning in the ninth grade through college completion and career readiness.

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