Layla Avila is founder and CEO of Education Leaders of Color, or EdLoC, a new membership organization dedicated to elevating the leadership, voices, and influence of people of color in education and to leading more inclusive efforts to improve education. Layla is driven by a central value, a “belief that our work and education is about really being able to use education to create more thriving black and Latino communities, with a belief that education is a key way of ending generational poverty.” This focus is driven by personal experience and her own education, which “really changed the trajectory for my family.” Her story:
In college and at Harvard’s Kennedy School, Layla explored the connections between income inequality and education nurturing her passion for systemic change in K-12 public education. She went into the classroom and taught second grade in Compton, then she joined to The New Teacher Project, now known as TNTP. She stayed there for many years and really didn’t envision leaving it.
One piece of advice that Layla gives to purpose-driven leaders is to consider, distinctively, not just their management style but their leadership principles too.
Layla encourages leaders to push themselves to do what’s hardest, particularly when it comes to living by their values.