Chief in Residence
Dr. Barbara Jenkins is a member of Chiefs for Change and chief in residence. She provides coaching, advising, and thought partnership to fellow members of our network and participants in our Future Chiefs leadership development program.
Jenkins also serves as superintendent of Orange County Public Schools (OCPS) in Florida, a role she has held since since 2012. Under Jenkins’ leadership, the district won the prestigious 2014 Broad Prize for Urban Education, which earned half-a-million dollars for student scholarships. The district also received the Governor’s Sterling Award in 2014 and 2015 and the Sustained Excellence Award in 2017 for its exemplary performance using research-based best practices. In 2015, OCPS received district accreditation from AdvancED. The district has also received accolades from the College Board for increasing access to Advanced Placement coursework, while simultaneously maintaining or increasing the number of students earning exam scores for college credit.
Jenkins is a nationally recognized education leader. In 2017, she received a presidential appointment as a director of the National Board of Education Sciences. She serves on the executive board of directors of the Council of the Great City Schools and the Florida Council of 100 and is a board member for Educational Testing Service; New Teacher Center; Strategic Education Research Partnership; and the SAT Suite Committee. She is past president of the Florida Association of District School Superintendents.
In 2017, Jenkins was named the Florida Superintendent of the Year and one of four finalists for the national title. The Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents named her Hispanic-Serving School District Superintendent of the Year, and the Florida Association for Career and Technical Education named her CTE Superintendent of the Year. Both the Orlando Sentinel and Orlando Magazine have named Jenkins as one of the 10 Most Powerful people in Central Florida on multiple occasions; in 2018, Orlando Magazine ranked her number one in education among its 50 Most Powerful. The Orlando Business Journal honored her as a CEO of the Year in 2015. She also received the Visionary Award from the Girl Scouts of Citrus Council and was named Central Florida Woman of the Year by the Women’s Executive Council.
Deeply engaged in the community, Jenkins serves on the boards of Advent Health; United Arts of Central Florida; Orlando Economic Partnership; and The Citizens Commission for Children.