The CDE Foundation announced today that it has named Ed Honowitz as the new Chief Executive Officer of the organization. Honowitz has been serving as the Interim CEO for the last ten months, and will now transition into this permanent role. 

CDE Foundation has established significant partnerships across the state with organizations, funders and school districts to support public education.  Many of CDE Foundation’s core programs have grown to become a part of an education network of resources that expands opportunities to collaborate and increase capacity on behalf of California’s students. 

“Ed Honowitz is an experienced leader with a clear understanding of the major challenges and opportunities our public education system is confronting in California.  After more than seven years with the organization, Ed stepped into the role of Interim CEO at a critical moment and provided our organization ongoing stability and clear direction. In the past year, he has worked closely with the California State Superintendent of Public Instruction and CDE leadership to expand our support of the Department while also seeing our organization launch new partnerships. Ed’s background as a policy leader in the CA State Senate provided him with a keen understanding of the education ecosystem and we are excited to see him implement a long-term vision for the strategic direction of the Foundation,” said Nancy Kirshner Rodriguez, CDEF Board Chair.

Honowitz has held the role of Senior Director of the California Labor Management Initiative (CA LMI) for the CDE Foundation since 2016. The initiative has convened over 180 labor-management teams of public school leaders from across the state to advance labor-management collaboration and continuous improvement through peer learning networks and training. Under his leadership, the CA LMI team has developed highly regarded resources to advance labor-management partnerships and collaborative practices. His efforts have increased the quality and accessibility of labor-management professional learning opportunities for thousands of educators.

Within his recent role as Interim CEO, Honowitz has led the development of a strategic plan framework for the Foundation, strengthened cross-sector collaborative partnerships, diversified revenue, and contributed to key education coalitions across the state. 

“I am honored to have the opportunity to lead the foundation and build on the important work that our staff has engaged in over the past decade.  I look forward to continuing to partner with the State Superintendent, the department of education, state education associations, and agencies as we help connect policy, practice, and research to support more equitable outcomes in our state,” said Honowitz.

Prior to joining CDE Foundation, Honowitz was an Education Policy Advisor to State Senator Carol Liu, and also served as a School Board Trustee with the Pasadena Unified School District. You can read his complete bio below and download the full press release here


The CDEF Team at the 2022 CA LMI Summer Institute.

The CDEF Team at the 2022 CA LMI Summer Institute.


Ed Honowitz Bio

Ed joined CDE Foundation in October 2016. Honowitz comes to the Foundation with a background in education policy. Ed served as education policy adviser for State Senator Carol Liu, who chaired the California Senate Education Committee.  Ed’s work in the California State Senate focused on K-12 education policy, school-based health, community schools partnership strategies, and cross-agency collaboration. Ed was a school board member in the Pasadena Unified School District for 12 years. He was elected twice as a member of the California School Boards Association delegate assembly and served on the legislative and conference committees.

Ed has presented at the California and National School Boards Association annual conferences and at the California League of Cities annual conference as well as the California Teachers Association Summer Institute and the Assoc. of California School Administrators Leadership Summit and Superintendent’s Symposium on topics ranging from community engagement, labor-management partnerships, community school collaboration and arts education. Ed is currently a board member of CREATE CA and is a member of the Public Engagement Panel of Advisors for the Institute for Local Government. Ed and his wife live in Pasadena. Their three children are products of Pasadena public schools and the University of California System. Go Bears and Gauchos!