10 Questions with Gabe Gonzalez
February 25, 2021
Since our leadership transition announcement in December, our team, led by Interim Executive Director Gabe Gonzalez and our Board of Directors, has been working hard to create the best foundation for our organization moving forward. From analyzing and establishing data practices, to initiating new partnership conversations and examining creative applications of our program, Gabe has spearheaded a multitude of efforts to ensure Reading In Motion remains a relevant and responsive resource to our schools, teachers, students, and now parents and other educators.
Now more than two months after that announcement, we sat down with Gabe to learn more about him and explore his vision for the organization.
Q: Where are you from?
A: I’m a native of New Mexico, and my family is originally from Northern New Mexico.
Q: What are your hobbies?
A: I look for opportunities to be outside, and more recently with the pandemic, finding a change in scenery has been a great way to enjoy free time.
I have also presented and spoken on education at conferences over the past several years and enjoy meeting and talking with teachers and leaders about opportunities for achievement, approaches and innovations in learning.
Q: What’s your favorite food?
A: With so many great foods, I have to say my favorites have changed time and again, but I do have a special taste for New Mexico traditional foods.
Q: Can you tell us a bit about your family?
A: I am a husband and father of two and place a high value on family and community.
Q: Can you tell us a bit about your background and experience?
A: During my career in education, I’ve worn many hats, dedicating myself to student learning as a teacher, school administrator, learning management director, and leader of a multi-state division while holding licenses for teaching, administration, and superintendent of schools.
I’ve served as a board director, governor’s council member on education, consultant, and member of several education associations. I’ve done my best to be an actively engaged educational leader, as a veteran of the classroom and pioneer of programmatic gateways to education innovation.
Q: What made you shift into education from engineering, and why does your background in engineering make you passionate about this particular organization?
A: From engineering to education, the steps I took began with certification programs that created opportunities and a path forward for engineering professionals, and it’s there that I found an interest in teaching and education. Soon after I began tutoring at local schools and (found) that inspiring students and engaging learners is very rewarding. Later I served as an administrator in elementary and high school, then regionally over multiple schools and most recently, nationally with multi-state programs.
Creating opportunities for engaging, inventive learning that lifts students towards their potential is where I look forward to continuing in my career for children and communities across regions.
Q: What was your favorite book growing up?
A: I remember Where the Sidewalk Ends being one of my favorite books when I was young.
Q: What’s your favorite book now?
A: While today I find myself enjoying research and academic articles, I still look for leisure books and good reads. The Life of Nikola Tesla is a book I picked up recently and am looking forward to having the chance to sit down with it.
Q: What are you most excited about for RIM? What are the benefits of this change of leadership?
A: Reading In Motion has been a pillar and standard for changing students’ lives through literacy and the arts. Now the world that students learn in has changed, and the way students experience education is adjusting to those changes.
Knowing that Reading In Motion will be able to help write the next chapter of education and bring together local leaders, teachers, and stakeholders to be a part of the work that supports children in our communities for tomorrow is exciting!
Q: What’s in store for the future of RIM?
A: Reading In Motion has made great strides in serving the needs of underprivileged students and ensuring that every child experiences learning to read in a way that fosters creativity and imagination. We are serving a growing need that has been expanded by the impacts on education in cities nationwide. In looking to the future, Reading In Motion is adapting practices now to ensure children have the skills they need to succeed in an uncertain future. Meeting students where they are, whether online or in buildings, everyone at RIM is coming together to design and create high-quality, research-based, data-driven literacy tools and resources that will help teachers inspire children and prepare them for success now and beyond.
We’re so excited for all the future has in store for our organization, and we’re eager to continue serving our country’s youngest readers in new ways. Reading In Motion has always been a community-centric organization, and we’re going to maintain that focus on our community, which includes you! Our work wouldn’t be possible without your help, and we encourage you to get involved by serving on our Board of Directors, joining our Auxiliary Board, or making a donation in support of our program.