Monica Maccera Filppu is an educator and non-profit leader with nearly 30 years of experience working to close the opportunity gap and ensure every child receives an education that will allow them to fulfill their potential in life. As an immigrant who has always worked in communities disproportionately impacted by poverty and discrimination, she is keenly aware of the role privilege and access play in the lived experiences of children.

She started her career as the Spanish-dominant teacher in a dual language classroom in Washington, DC, and spent the next 10 years working to increase opportunities for children to receive a high-quality education that celebrates biculturalism and biliteracy. In 2007, Monica joined the staff of Teach For America, CT where she led an alternate route to certification – collaborating with district, state and university partners to champion the idea that student success is the ultimate goal of teacher preparation. Monica launched the Great Oaks Charter School in Bridgeport, CT as the Founding Executive Director and Principal. She later led the team of the Teach Western Mass Residency to build a teacher certification program that seeks to build a diverse, local talent pipeline for high needs subject areas in urban schools Most recently she served as Executive Director of Common Ground High School Urban Farm and Environmental Education Center in New Haven.

Monica holds a Master’s Degree in TESOL/Bilingual Education from Georgetown University. Outside of work, Monica enjoys spending time with her large extended family, cooking and getting close to nature in our diverse urban environments.