EDWARDS, Calif. - William R. "Russ" Claughton has been selected to lead the Office of Education at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center.
Claughton took over leadership of the office, located at the AERO Institute in the Palmdale Civic Center, on Jan. 18.
As NASA Dryden's Director of Education, Claughton will manage a portfolio of programs for students from kindergarten to graduate school through formal and informal education activities and public outreach. Additionally, the office manages a nationwide program providing funds for research facilities at minority-serving college-level institutions. These activities are designed to inspire the next generation of the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) workforce, ensuring that the nation remains competitive and secure.
Claughton comes to the Dryden Education post from the Northeast Independent School District, San Antonio, Texas, where he directed and evaluated student achievement and teacher performance as campus administrator and director of magnet programs at a middle school. .
He began his teaching career in 1985, teaching science to elementary and middle school students with an emphasis in aerospace science. He has developed numerous interactive educational activities that engage students using simulated space programs employing STEM practices and integrated teaching techniques.
While on active duty in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1996-2004, Claughton served overseas in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Claughton earned a Bachelor of Science in elementary education with an Earth science minor from Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches, Texas, and completed post-graduate work in advanced outdoor education, instructional leadership and administrative practices. He received a Master of Education in educational administration from Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, and studied current issues in aerospace education at Oklahoma State University.
Claughton has been a presenter at many state and national conferences and lecturer at a Texas STEM center university program. He is active in several professional organizations.
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