U.Va. Curry School Names Nancy Ryan Iverson Its 2011 Distinguished Alumna

July 8, 2011 — The University of Virginia's Curry School of Education Foundation has presented Nancy Ryan Iverson with its 2011 Distinguished Alumnus Award.

Iverson is assistant dean for kindergarten-12 education in the U.Va. School of Continuing and Professional Studies and director of the Center for K-12 Education.
Iverson entered education when she and her husband moved to Prince Edward County in 1967 and discovered a community still reeling from the effects of Virginia's 1959-64 "Massive Resistance" school closings, a response to court-ordered desegregation. She began as a volunteer teaching art to fifth-graders and later established a tutoring program for high school students. She earned a master's degree in administration and supervision from the Curry School in 1977 and worked for the Prince Edward County Public Schools for the next 16 years.

Since joining the U.Va. School of Continuing and Professional Studies in 1994, Iverson established the school's Statewide K-12 Advisory Council, which brings together key educators to share best practices and build collaborative partnerships, and the Statewide Communities of Practice for Excellence, an award-winning program completed by more than 300 Virginia education leaders.

"Through the years Nancy has implemented a philosophy that school improvement is crucially dependent on the degree to which all the adults in an organization learn together, ponder together and work together for common goals," said Robert Lynn Canady, professor emeritus of the Curry School. "I know of few people who have been more passionate and dedicated to education, and she has contributed significantly to the profession through her teaching, grant writing and leadership."

Iverson received her Ph.D. from the Curry School in 2002 and won the 2003 Dissertation Research Award from the National Staff Development Council. Her "Gateway to Teaching Career-Switcher" program received awards in 2003 and 2004 from the University Continuing Education Association.

"One needs only to observe and listen to recognize … that Nancy is a person whose life calling has been to serve others, that she is an individual who has seen how social injustices can disable a generation, and that her personal energies will be, forever and boundlessly, devoted to preserving the ideal that public education is the bedrock of democracy," said Hanover County Schools Superintendent Steward D. Roberson, who earned Curry School degrees in 1977 and '87 and is a member of the Curry School Foundation's board of directors.

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