Kitty Kelly Epstein

Kitty served as Education Director for Mayor Ronald Dellums, and led an innovation in democracy called the Task Force Process, which consisted of 41 groups comprised of 800 people whose recommendations helped to shape the administration of Mayor Ron Dellums   In that role, she also worked on diversifying the teaching force, creating innovative youth engagement programs, and altering city policies so that more flatlands residents would be hired on city funded projects.  May 2012, she was named one of the “2012 Powerful Women of the Bay Area” and received community leadership awards from the John George Democratic Club and PUEBLO.   Her most recent book is Organizing to Change A City derives from her experiences as an organizer and provides steps and guidance for change. 

While teaching English at the Emiliano Zapata Street Academy, a unique public alternative school which was an outgrowth of the civil rights movement, Dr. Epstein received the Marcus Foster Educator of the Year award.  Later, Dr. Epstein published an article on the school called  “Miracle School, Child of the Civil Rights Movement:” in the widely-read Phi Delta Kappan journal.

Epstein earned a doctorate at the University of California, Berkeley where she received the Outstanding Dissertation Award and served as a visiting professor.  She has prepared hundreds of urban teachers and has supervised the dissertation studies of several dozen doctoral candidates.  Her second book, A Different View of Urban Schools: Civil Rights, Critical Race Theory, and Unexplored Realities challenges myths and assumptions about urban school districts.  Dr. Epstein has spoken in Nicaragua, China, Jordan, Ethiopia, and South Africa about the creation of effective education programs, particularly for disenfranchised high school students.  Kitty is also the host of a bi-weekly radio program, Education Today, on which she covers international, national, and local policy issues.