Ellen Moir honored by SF philanthropy group

New Teacher Center Director Ellen Moir was honored for exemplary leadership in education.

Ellen Moir, director of the UCSC New Teacher Center (NTC), has received a Full Impact Award for exemplary leadership in education from the Full Circle Fund, a San Francisco-based philanthropy organization.

Moir received the award during the Full Circle Fund's annual forum held Nov. 14 in San Francisco City Hall. This year's gathering featured keynote speaker Al Gore.

Billed as an "evening of civic engagement showcasing bold models for sustainable social change," the forum featured a VIP reception, Gore's speech, and a networking session that brought together more than 600 business leaders, politicians, entrepreneurs, and others.

The Full Circle Fund is a membership organization devoted to cultivating new community leaders and creating "lasting social change in the Bay Area." Members share their time, money, skills, and connections with nonprofits, businesses, and government agencies. Grantmaking efforts have been focused on the areas of affordable housing, education, and technology. A fourth area, the environment, was announced at the Nov. 14 forum.

Moir made a big impression on the membership last spring, when she discussed the center's mission during the group's annual retreat, and the NTC was subsequently selected as a partner and grantee organization.

"The relationship between the Full Circle Fund and the New Teacher Center is a perfect example of how the fund wants to be able to work with nonprofits and the senior leaders of nonprofits," said Revell Horsey, leader of the fund's educational team's teaching-related efforts. "Our members want to apply their business experience, acumen, and some funding to help high-growth nonprofits and their leaders scale their organizations."

The NTC has developed a nationally recognized model of professional development for new teachers that focuses on addressing the needs of novice educators during their first two years in the classroom. By working with school districts in more than 30 states, the center has helped reduce alarming rates of new-teacher turnover from an average of 50 percent to as low as 5 percent.

The Full Circle Fund is helping the NTC develop a new communications and marketing strategy to facilitate its growth and its role as a "thought leader" in the public-education policy debate.