The SAM Blog

Exciting Times Ahead: Top K-12 Superintendents Join SAM Labs Advisory Board!

Exciting Times Ahead: Top K-12 Superintendents Join SAM Labs Advisory Board!

Hey there, SAM Labs community!

We’ve got some thrilling news to share. We’re expanding our horizons with the addition of some of the most accomplished K-12 superintendents in the country to our Advisory Board. This is a big step forward in our mission to reshape STEAM education.

You can read the official press release here!

Our new Advisory Board is a powerhouse of talent and experience. Led by Kathy Hurley, a seasoned leader in education technology and CEO of Girls Thinking Global, this board is set to guide SAM Labs to new heights in STEAM education.

Here’s a quick introduction to our new board members:

  • Dr. M. Ann Levett joins the board after retiring as superintendent of Savannah-Chatham County Public School System (SCCPSS) in Savannah, Georgia. A native of Savannah, Dr. Levett previously served as Chief Academic Officer in the district for four years before being appointed superintendent. Previously, she served as acting superintendent in Dayton, Ohio, and in higher education positions at Antioch University and Yale University School of Medicine. She is a published author, nationally known speaker, consultant on international educational projects, and assistant executive director for AASA, the School Superintendents Association. In 2015, she was recognized for her accomplishments in Education by the Georgia Senate, was named Georgia’s STEM/STEAM Advocate of the Year in 2019, and named a National Superintendent to Watch in 2021.
  • Dr. Baron Davis joins the board after seven years as superintendent of the Richland Two School District in Columbia, South Carolina. He was the first African-American to serve as superintendent of the district. Previously, he served as a principal at Spring Valley High School and as an assistant superintendent in the district. He has earned two master’s degrees and a doctorate from the University of South Carolina. He has been an active member of ERDI. 
  • Kam Patton joins the board as former superintendent of Collier County Public Schools (Naples), Florida for 12 years.  She was the 2022 Florida Superintendent of the Year.  Prior to her appointment in Collier County, she was the Assistant Superintendent of School Operations for Miami-Dade County Public Schools. She is the current Chair of the Florida Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Florida initiative. She has also remained active in the industry with various superintendent groups, including the Florida Association of District School Superintendents (FADSS).
  • Steve Murley joins the board after stepping down as superintendent in Green Bay Public Schools, Wisconsin. Prior to leading Green By Public Schools, Mr. Murley was superintendent at Iowa City Schools, Iowa for 10 years. Since 2015, he has served as an adjunct lecturer and assistant professor at the University of Iowa’s College of Education. He currently has an education consulting company that provides analysis of educational infrastructure, market research, personnel needs, recruitment and placement of educational administrators, professional development in instructional course settings, coaching for individual administrators/ teams of administrators, and serving as an expert witness in legal proceedings. He is an active member of ERDI.
  • Dr. Tom Trigg joins the board after retiring as superintendent of Highland Park ISD, TX in the Dallas metro area, where he served for 8 years. Prior to Highland Park, he was the superintendent in Blue Valley School District in Overland Park, Kansas, where he served as superintendent for 11 years and assistant/deputy superintendent for 8 years. Before moving to Overland Park, he was school principal and district-level administrator in the Gardner-Edgerton School District in Gardner, Kansas. He has been an active member in ERDI. He earned an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and Administration from Kansas University.

Our founder and CEO, Joachim Horn, couldn’t be more thrilled. “The talent and expertise on our advisory board is incredible,” he shared. “Their commitment to SAM Labs’ mission makes me even more optimistic about the future of STEAM education.”

This is more than just an announcement for us. It’s a testament to our unwavering commitment to innovation and excellence in education. With the guidance of these esteemed professionals, we’re gearing up to make even bigger waves in the world of STEAM education.

Dr. Baron Davis makes a point as other members of the advisory board look on. Members of the advisory board in discussion during last month's meeting. SAM Labs Advisory Board members Dr. M. Ann Levett, Steve Murley, and Kam Patton in discussion.

A Bit About Us

For those new to our community, SAM Labs is all about preparing K-12 students for the future of work through STEAM. We’re passionate about fostering creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills.

Since 2014, SAM Labs has been used in 7,000 schools globally. Notable implementations include Redmond Public Schools which has achieved a 500% increase in STEM and CS elective enrollment with female and BIPOC students since implementing SAM Labs. Other notable implementations include Portland Public Schools where STEAM summer camp enrollment has increased more than 200% since implementing SAM Labs, and Palm Springs Unified School District where SAM Labs has been implemented as the district’s core STEAM curriculum and was used on more than 80% of all school days during the 2022-23 school year.

Cheers to the future of STEAM education!