Josh serves as Transcend’s Head of Network, focused on building a vibrant national community of visionary stakeholders throughout the field. These include school and systems leaders, educators, researchers, funders, and other supporters, with the goal of learning together to advance innovation and prepare all young people to thrive in and transform the world.

Prior to joining Transcend in the winter of 2022, Josh spent over a decade at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as a Senior Program Officer and then Deputy Director in the K–12 program, before serving as a Senior Advisor for the US Program President. Specifically, when on the K–12 team, Josh co-led a 500M portfolio focused on increasing the number of Black, Latino, and low-income students who earn a high school diploma, enroll in a postsecondary institution, and are on track in their first year to attain a credential with labor market value.

Prior to SEED, Josh taught social studies for three years at Milton Academy in Massachusetts and seven years at Menlo-Atherton High School in Atherton, California, where he was also the founder and executive director for RISE (Realizing Intellect through Self-Empowerment), a youth development program targeted at African American youth. Josh has a bachelor’s degree in American history from Harvard University, a master’s degree in education from Stanford University, and a second master’s in educational administration with an administrative credential, also from Stanford University.

Before the Gates Foundation, Josh worked in two public school districts focused on creating and improving school options and learning environments. Josh was the Deputy Chief of School Innovation (OSI) for DC Public Schools, which focused on supporting and empowering 58 DC public schools through the infusion of unique programmatic elements, and was the Executive Officer of the Office of New Schools (ONS) at Chicago Public Schools, which worked to recruit, develop, and support schools as part of a mayoral initiative to create 100 new schools over a 7-year period.

Josh has also been a principal at The SEED School, a public charter boarding school in Washington DC, and he taught high school social studies for 10 years in Massachusetts and California before working with SEED.

Josh has a B.A. in American History from Harvard University, a Master’s in Education from Stanford University, and a Master’s in Educational Administration, also from Stanford University. Josh currently serves on the boards of AVID, City Works DC, Education Forward DC, EL Haynes Public Charter School (board chair), Leading Now, and One World Network of Schools. He has previously served on the boards of Breakthrough Collaborative, Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning, City Year DC, Maya Angelou Public Charter School, and The National Alliance of Public Charter Schools.

Josh lives in DC with his wife, Heather, and has two young adult daughters, Ellika and Zoe.

Photo of Josh Edelman

Josh Edelman