News Brief - 1/9/17 TEA’s Deputy Commissioner brings real-world education experience to nonprofit university AUSTIN WGU Texas has named Martin Winchester as the newest member of the nonprofit online university’s advisory board. Winchester is Deputy Commissioner of Educator Support at the Texas Education Agency (TEA) in Austin. He will serve with 10 additional WGU Texas board members consisting of educators, industry leaders and representatives from corporations and foundations. In his role with the TEA, Winchester oversees the agency’s work on Educator Preparation Programs, Testing and Certification, Educator Misconduct Investigations, and statewide professional development initiatives aimed at recruiting, supporting and retaining teachers. “It’s a privilege to be able to share my perspectives and real-world education experience in improving student outcomes,” said Winchester. “I’m fortunate to serve with a diverse group of distinguished board members from across the state as we help the university continue to prepare students for successful careers once they graduate.” An educator with more than two decades of experience, Winchester taught at the elementary, middle, and high school levels in the Pharr-San Juan-Alamo school district. For three years, he served as the Chief Schools Officer of IDEA Public Schools overseeing the recruitment, selection, training and supervision of the district’s principals and curriculum team. “As WGU Texas continues to grow and develop, we appreciate the expertise and guidance provided by our advisory board,” said WGU Texas Chancellor Veronica Vargas Stidvent. “We’re excited to have Martin’s viewpoint on the board with his wide and varied experience as a teacher and as a dynamic leader in education.” Winchester is a former National Board Certified Teacher and holds degrees from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, the University of Minnesota and the University of Texas-Pan American. He also holds a principal certification from the State of Texas, as well as teacher certifications in English Language Arts, English as a Second Language and Social Studies Composite.